601 cigars was a new lineof smokes that was introduced to the public in 2006. These are more offerings from Jose Pepin Garcia and are made in Esteli, Nicaragua. This factory is world renowned for its configuration of rollers and other experts in the field of growing and rolling tobacco. These smokes have received very high ratings across the board and many of the reviews are more than favorable. They are made by EO, a brand which is also known as the United Tobacco Company. Not too long ago, EO merged with Rocky Patel.
Perhaps one of the things that make the 601 cigars rather unique in the industry is that one can purchase them in an assortment of colors. Because they are varied in the embodiment of each, aficionados who are at any level of experience with smoking these fine sticks will find something that will be quite pleasing to them. There is the Black line that is a medium to full bodied type of stick. The filler is Nicaraguan tobacco, as is the binder, and it is topped off with a Connecticut wrapper. The Habano line is on the other end as a full bodied type of smoke.
The difference is in the wrapper as this offering has a Habano instead of a Connecticut. The Maduro line offers a smoke that sports a Maduro wrapper. Then there is the Habano Oscuro, which is a very full bodied offering. While its binder and filler echo the same ingredients as the other lines, the wrapper is a Habano Oscuro. Others in this line include the Cubao, the La Bomba, the Maduro , the Mi Barrio and the Murcielago.
601 cigars are available in different sizes for each line. While some of the lines may say that they are medium to full bodied, the makers guarantee that most aficionados will find that each of these lines are leaning far more toward the full bodied side. They even go as far as to say that these are not for the smokers who do not want the full punch of a great full bodied stick.
One reviewer said of 601 cigars, the Maduro, left the reviewer raving about how great this stick really is. During the initial light up of the stick, there was a great deal of smoke. The texture of the 601 cigars as they were breathed in was described as leaning heavily on the creamy side. There were flavor notes of cocoa as well as a nuttiness that had a sort of roasted taste to it according to the reviewer. This stayed consistent throughout, until the final third of the stick. During this last third, spiciness seemed to waft in and out. The creaminess of the chocolate and the roasted nuttiness, like that of almonds, which had been there all along, seemed to remain. Overall this was described as a very bold type of flavor that is not for the faint at heart. One reviewer went as far as to say that this stick might knock someone on their behind if they were not ready for it.
The 7 20 4 Cigars brand was idle for most of forty years. K.A. Kendall decided to bring it back to life in 2009. These are manufactured in Honduras by Tabacos de Oriente and offered in an 1874 series and classic series.
The 7 20 4 cigars are named after the street address of the company that was begun by R.G. Sullivan which was 724 Elm Street in Manchester, New Hampshire. The company had been in business from 1874 until the Cuban tobacco embargo in 1963. The company then closed its doors and remained closed until K.A. Kendall bought the brand. He had always been a collector of tobacco memorabilia and had purchased any that he could get his hands on. So purchasing the trademark for 7 20 4 cigars just seemed to fall right in line with his collection.
These smokes feature filler tobaccos from Nicaragua, Honduras, Mexico and Columbia. The binder that is made from Costa Rican tobacco is combined to make the extremely wonderful offering that is described as being very flavorful and extremely smooth. The 7 20 4 cigars are finished in a Brazilian Mata Fina wrapper that gives this medium bodied stick its great long lasting burn and taste.
There is a 52,670 square foot seven story building located at 175 Canal Street in Manchester, New Hampshire. It still stands there today. This was R.G. Sullivan’s factory that began in 1920. It was 1889 when he built his first factory, and he added an addition in 1895. By 1907 the factory employed 400 people and was making around 12 million sticks per year. Originally they were called Gold Dust ten cents but he later changed the name to 7 20 4 cigars. These smokes were made by hand with pure Havana filler and sported an imported Sumatra wrapper.
Roger G. Sullivan was born in 1851 in Bradford, New Hampshire and his parents were of Irish descent. At the very young age of nineteen he began his business in tobacco with only two employees. It was 1893 when he first became a tobacconist.
Since K.A. Kendall loved all things pertaining to tobacco collectibles, this was an opportunity of a lifetime to bring back to life a brand that had been sitting quietly and tucked away for nearly forty years. This is how he came upon the notion of giving new life to this once very famous and popular brand that was known all over the United States during that period.
Now, thanks to a man who wanted to bring history back to the present day, this wonderful line is once again available for everyone to enjoy. Aficionados all sing the praises of this brand as well as offer accolades for the man who gave the brand back to the world.
Too often when great things just stop being offered, they die and become but a memory. Thanks to a little innovative spirit and a lot of ingenuity, aficionados have this very old and dear friend from the past that has been resurrected.
The A. Turrent Cigarscame about from over 110 years of excellence in the tobacco business for Alejandro and Alberto Turrent. Their Mexican cigars are not only well known, but their tobacco farms are also the largest in the country when it comes to growing tobacco for such wonders as A. Turrent Cigars.
The Turrents are a family steeped in the history of this industry, and have strived to remain competitive in this area. This is what led them to creating the line known as the A. Turrent Cigar. There are a lot of companies that choose not to use tobacco grown in Mexico both today and in the past. Many companies decided to go with tobaccos grown in the Dominican Republic or Honduras. Luckily, the Turrent family had no intention of doing what other companies did. The A. Turrent cigar is known for its flavor and quality because of the rich tobacco grown in in that country.
While it cannot be disputed that the cigar was born in Cuba, the Mexican people have been involved in production for nearly as long as those in Cuba. It is often held to be true by assorted historians that the art of rolling and smoking tobacco actually started in Mexico with the ancient Mayan culture. This culture would be passed onto the Native American Indians for use as medicines.
The A. Turrent cigar has become the namesake for the Turrent family. In the beginning, they were for the family’s own use and not a commercially sold item. The only way that you could get one of these gems was by becoming a guest by invitation to their home. They were produced by hand one at a time, and even though they are now offered to the public, they are still limited in production because of the time involved in producing them, with an emphasis on quality much more than quantity.
From the earliest days of tobacco production, the seedlings would be started on a mountain side, and then transferred to the fields once they began to grow. This was to maintain the plants, keeping the insects from eating the seeds, and the rain from washing them away. It is know-how such as this that allows a high quality of tobacco to be produced by the Turrent family.
Upward of 19,000 cigars are produced daily at the Turrent farm and factory. The more difficult cuts are done by the most experienced rollers. If you were to tour the inventory room you would likely see cigars numbering in the millions awaiting shipment. As they wait in the cedar room, the room itself lends a slight hint of cedar to the aroma of the sticks, as well as allowing it to rid itself of any excess moisture.
From their first offering, which was the El Aguila cigar, to the A. Turrent line, you will find quality tobacco from the Veracruz area of Mexico to be a treat for the aficionado in your life, as much as for yourself.
Arriving on the scene in 2011, Aging Room Cigars has left a renowned impression. The year this line debuted it was ranked in the top twenty-five by CigarAficionados. This line boasts the three most prominent examples of Dominican puros in the last five years. This line was created to fulfill the concept of using the rarest tobaccos to create arguably the best boutique releases on the market.
Aging room cigars is a branch of the Habana Cuba Oliveros cigar company. This highly esteemed company was formed eleven years ago through the dreams of Dr. Alina Nodal, Rafael Nodal, and Hank Bischoff. Oliveros calls Miami home, but hosts production facilities in the Dominican Republic, Nicaragua, and Honduras. They are one of very few companies to have factories in all three major growing regions outside of Cuba.
Aging Room Cigars was created when Oliveros selected a tobacco too rare for regular production. Instead of vaulting this tobacco, owner Rafael Nodal birthed the Aging Room M356. Then in 2012, this line as well as the Swag line was incorporated under Boutique Blends Cigars. These lines are known for delivering limited quantity tobacco products.
The premier of this line was the Aging Room Cigars M356. The M356 is a flawless Dominican puro featuring four vitolas. This stogie is created using Dominican habano seed tobacco from the La Canela region. This stunning Colorado-claro has a slight press to the edges. This wrapper takes a unique chocolate tie-dye pattern making it the most aesthetically exotic habano available. The beginning tastes of floral, woodsy notes and a spice carried by a bubbly sensation. This stogie ends with beautiful cream and spearmint notes according to those that offered reviews.
The second release and the first under Boutique Blends was the Havao Connecticut. This stogie is luxuriously wrapped in an Ecuadorian Connecticut Habano. Its binders and fillers are the finest Dominican Habano Criollos. This soft brown claro takes a pleasing silky appearance with minimal veins and seams. This stogie offers a kick which settles nicely behind a classic woodsy taste. This spice is joined by a vanilla note and both creep to the forefront. The finish is a wonderfully coordinated offering of spiced vanilla and an oatmeal taste. This ideal medium-bodied stogie is the second Dominican puro released by Aging Room and comes in six vitolas.
The latest esteemed release is the Quattro F55 Sumatra. This was the first box press introduced by this manufacturer, and this line is available in five box pressed vitolas. This is a medium toned brown stogie with dark chocolate tones mixed throughout. It features almost no apparent veins and attractively, barber-style swirled seams. For this puro release, the staple Dominican Habano leaf is used for the binder and filler. The most distinct attribute of this line is the Indonesian Sumatra wrap. This spectacular wrapper was discovered in an abandoned blunt factory in Europe. The initial flavors of this release were cedar and sweet tobacco. This was joined by dark coffee and citrus notes. A peppery taste played a continuous, delightful background note. The flavors seemed to alternate for dominance, but ended nicely with peppery citrus and cedar. Aging Room Cigars successfully creates the top boutique stogies in its class, leaving aficionados with a relentless desire for the next masterminded production.
Alec Bradley cigars are sold by the company Alan Rubin started in 1996, which he named after his sons. Unlike many cigar company owners who seem to have generations of tobacco flowing in their veins, Alan Rubin worked after college with his father in a company importing fasteners to sell to cabinet companies. Later, after Florida was hit by Hurricane Andrew, the company decided to change its focus to hurricane fasteners. This was a higher volume, but low-margin product, and the company was doing quite well when they sold it.
Rubin did not know what he wanted to do next, but he knew he did not want to deal with employees or inventory. Of course, things did not work out quite the way he expected, as he ended up dealing with just that. It was all due to his love of the cigar making tradition. He appreciated the fact that the machinery could not force the end product to a faster end, and the technology had to make way for the slower requirements of the smokes. He ended up in the field, ultimately selling Alec Bradley cigars, even though it fit none of his earlier requirements for what he was looking for in a new company. He named it after his children, and because his father had taught him to name companies so they started with an “A,”—that way they would be at the beginning of the phone book.
Unfortunately, he faced many struggles to keep this new company afloat, not least of which were the two times the company almost went under due to poor choices for a business model. Apparently cigar smoking enthusiasts were not in need of a company solely selling to golf courses or one selling discounted flavored stogies. These two attempts were called Bogey’s Stogies and Gourmet Dessert Cigars, respectively.
He soldiered on though, and fortunately for the existence of his company and the Alec Bradley cigars, ultimately ended up working to create a new brand with Hendrik Kelner, the Davidoff maker. Things started to look up for Rubin after he made this connection with Kelner. The line was called the Occidental Reserve, because Kelner wanted to advertise the Occidental factory, and they sent out 500 two-pack samplers to vendors. They later called all the vendors who had received the samples to see if they thought this product could sell, and received 300 customers ready to retail these inexpensive, quality stogies. With these new customers, Rubin was able to pay off the significant existing customer debt and move forward with some new ideas.
The company had its first profitable year four years after the founding. Since then the company has continued to thrive. In 2007, Alec Bradley cigars welcomed a new one to the line: The Tempus. The name means time in Latin, and was to indicate to length of time waiting for the tobacco to be ready. It was the company’s first full-bodied cigar, as the other ones had been no stronger than medium-bodied. It was also the first smoke with the company’s name as the top-billed company involved.
Butane torch lighters are also sold along with Alec Bradley cigars and both can be found at your favorite cigar shop.
Ardent nicotine users, or those who simply enjoy the ritual of smoking, rave about electronic cigarettes and the newfound freedom they bestow upon anyone in need of a nicotine fix, just about anywhere, anytime.
In a time when smoking in public places has become prohibited or - at the very least - frowned upon, smokers have increasingly been banned to dark alleyways or limited to their own back yard porches to indulge in tobacco products. The social stigma associated with smoking also often drives a wedge among friends during dinners and parties, forcing the tobacco user to physically distance himself from the group if he wishes to pursue his nicotine pleasure.
The concern for many, of course, is second hand smoke. Proven to potentially adversely affect even non-smokers, government agencies and health organizations have for years campaigned to eliminate public smoking grounds. This was first done by banning smoking from government buildings, and more recently from restaurants, cafés and bars in many communities across the nation.
So what is it about electronic cigarettes that allow smokers to achieve their nicotine fix just about anywhere and at anytime? The secret lies in the liquid that fuels these devices and generates the “e-smoke.” Manufacturers, distributors and users call the practice of puffing on an electronic cigarette “vaping” instead of smoking, because the liquid that generates the white puffy cloud that so resembles tobacco smoke is in reality simply nicotine-infused water vapor. The liquid and the vapor it creates through a battery-powered heating process contain none of the carcinogens that caused traditional tobacco products to gain their abysmal reputation. As a result, second hand smoke and its health risks are of no concern to the user of an e-device or anyone in his proximity.
Even though these products are rapidly increasing in popularity., lack of knowledge about electronic cigarettes is still common among non-smokers. So their use is often surrounded by debate. A user powering up his e-device and puffing away in a restaurant may well encounter questions from the staff of the establishment and possibly harvest stares from other patrons. Some devices are manufactured to look just like traditional cigarettes, in size as well as in color, which may also cause confusion among onlookers.
Lawmakers in many U.S. states are currently having animated discussions about electronic cigarettes, analyzing potential health risks manufacturers say don’t exist, and banning the sale of these devices to minors due to the nicotine content. Initially marketed as smoking cessation aids, manufacturers are no longer allowed to tout the devices as such and now simply advertise them as an alternative to traditional tobacco use. Some airlines have prohibited use of the devices in-flight, and users are encouraged to check with the airline prior to “vaping” in the plane cabin.
Notable about electronic cigarettes are the versatility of use they offer and the wide range of variety in which the devices are available. There is the disposable type that offers the smoking experience of approximately a pack of traditional tobacco products. Then there is the cartridge variety which allows users to easily replace the atomizer on the existent battery. Lastly, experienced users often prefer the tank system, which features refillable capsules that hold the e-liquid. The e cigarette liquid itself is available in a wide choice of flavors and various levels of nicotine content for a custom “vaping” experience.
Angelenos Cigars are artfully produced by artisans in a nod to the “City of Angels” or Los Angeles, California. This was the reason for the name. Enjoying a good smoke often includes partaking of the camaraderie of friends and acquaintances from all walks of life. They all have one thing in common, and that one thing is the love of a great cigar.
The Angelenos cigar salutes all of the people in the world who have had to overcome skyrocketing taxes and smoking laws to continue to frolic in the lavish flavors and aromas that they have come to adore while enjoying a good smoke. Even if that means being relegated to the great outdoors by laws that say you can no longer smoke inside any public building. These are a hardy group of individuals who will not give up this pleasurable, luxurious, and relaxing pastime.
While sporting an Ecuadorian wrapper, you will indulge in the Angelenos cigar and its hand selected choice of Tobacco from the Dominican Republic. Carlito Fuente oversees the production of these exquisite sticks. Peppery, leather-like tastes flood your senses, along with a nice hint of cedar.
When you first light up an Angelenos cigar, along comes the rather unexpected taste of gingerbread, and an even more surprising hint of eggnog. You will also find spices such as nutmeg, alluring you to take another draw. You will also discover a note of brown sugar complemented by a slight hint of cream. Its unusual aroma then leaps into action, featuring warm scents of cinnamon.
Differentiating it from any other, Angelenos cigars offer waves of flavor. Once you are well into the smoke, there is a definite evolution of flavor that is undeniable. Sweetness abates, giving way to a more leathery, earthy taste. It is then that you experience the full-bodied taste. The Ecuadorian wrapper then takes over, offering its presence in exciting new ways. As you finish one of these fabulous sticks, you will notice the strength, as well as the smoothness never wavered.
This is a stick for the novice as much as the aficionado, but the experienced smoker is the one who will thoroughly enjoy the distinction that this brand has to offer, because they have other experiences with which to compare it. This smoke is sophisticated enough to meet even the most discriminating palate’s demanding need for full-bodied flavor, but it is also simplistic enough to woo the beginner just as easily. It is such a delightfully smooth stick, and it is perfect to be enjoyed during any occasion, whether it is morning or evening.
This brand has been met with rave reviews since its introduction. Whether it is the creamy flavor of the Lonsdale, the Toro, or the Gran Toro, critics have been quick to offer accolades to this new line that was introduced in 2009. While this may be a stick that is new to the scene, it is definitely one that you don’t want to miss out on, so browse your favorite online cigar shop and order some of these gems for yourself.
Arturo Fuente cigars are some of the most coveted and well-loved cigars in the world. Every Arturo Fuente line has become highly famous in its own right.All are highly sought after, including the Don Carlos, Opus X, Hemingway, and the Grand Reserva lines.Arturo Fuente cigars are also all handmade using only the very best vintage tobaccos that is grown on a private family reserve in the Dominican Republic that has been set aside exclusively for the cultivation of this tobacco.
There are multiple lines from which cigar aficionados can choose if you they to experience a full range of flavors and impeccable blends.
Arturo Fuente Don Carlos
For the smoker looking for medium-blend strength in a Cameroon wrapper, there is the Don Carlos line.With Dominican filler, it is the personal favorite of Carlos Fuentes himself.Known for its spicy smoke and flawless construction in a Colorado wrapper, it has received very high ratings for its excellent flavor and even burn.
The Don Carlos No. 2 has also been given very high ratings for its dark, oily wrapper, spicy flavor, and earthy overtones—along with an excellent draw.Aficionados praise it continuously for its abundance of smoke and its solid, medium body.
The Arturo Fuentes, Don Carlos No. 4 is often called the small cigar with a BIG flavor.It has received consistently high ratings for its aged leaf and its perfect roll.Smokers are always that it is well worth the additional cost due to its top quality taste and appearance of the Cameroon wrapper.
The Don Carlos Presidente has earned a reputation among many as being the very best of all Arturo Fuentes cigars.It is renowned as a first class cigar in every respect, including its even burn, its excellent construction, and its perfect draw with a medium body.It is characterized by a rich taste and a semi-sweet finish.
Arturo Fuente Gran Reserva
The Gran Reserva is the flagship line for Arturo Fuente. These cigars are all medium-bodied and exceptionally smooth.
Known as medium strength cigars, they are available in either Cameroon or Connecticut wrappers.With Dominican filler and binders, they offer reliable, consistent amounts of flavor and lots of smoke.
The newest addition to this line is the Chateau Cuban Belicoso.It has a Dominican filler and binder from the Dominican Republic, Nicaragua, Mexico, and Brazil.It comes in a Cameroon wrapper and is a great smoke for the daytime or for the evening.
Arturo Fuente Hemingway
Cigar smokers all over the world love the Hemingway line of Arturo Fuente Cigars.A smoker simply cannot go wrong with a Hemingway.The strength of these cigars can range from Medium to Spicy to Complex.The Colorado wrapper is exceptional in quality, and oily and smooth.
The Hemingway line of Arturo Fuente Cigars is also one of those lines that can introduce cigarette smokers to the world of cigars.It offers pure relaxation, laid back, stress-free moments, and long hours featuring continuous draws of contentment.
Aficionados also love the Hemingway line for its dark Cameroon wrapper.It is firmly rolled so that it burns with a nice, white ash.Many say too that it features a unique blend of mild leather and coffee taste and call it a good hour smoke.Overall, it is an ideal great Arturo Fuente cigar for first time smokers.
One of our customers stated that he only smokes once per week, and that this is the only cigar he smokes.He loves the mild start and solid finish rich that is rich with oils.
The Hemingway line of Arturo Fuente Cigars is a line that cigarette smokers can enjoy as an introduction to the world of cigars.It is pure relaxation, kicked back, distressed, and long, continuous draws of contentment.
Ashton Cigars was created in the early 1980’s by second generation tobacconist from Philadelphia, Robert Levin. Levin’s experience in the industry at that time included years of importing and retailing cigars. His dream of creating Ashton Cigars was realized when Levin teamed up with the world renowned Dominican tobacco manufacturers, the Fuente Family. With Fuente’s growing and blending expertise backing him, Robert Levin has created one of the most sought after premium cigars in the world.
Ashton Cigars are made with the finest and richest Dominican leaf for their filler and binder and wrapped with the oiliest Connecticut Shade grown and Ecuadorian wrappers. Each Ashton cigar is made by Tabacalera A. Fuente y Cia. These exceptional cigars are offered in six distinct blends: Ashton Classic, Ashton Cabinet Selection, Ashton VSG (Virgin Sun Grown), Ashton Heritage Puro Sol, Ashton Estate Sun Grown (ESG), and Ashton Aged Maduro.
Ashton Cigar Recognitions/Ratings
Ashton Virgin Sun Grown Torpedo: #9 in Cigar Aficionado’s 2009 “Top 25 Cigars of the Year” with rating of 92, and #5 in Cigar Aficionado’s 2007 “Top 25 Cigars of the Year” with a rating of 93. Blended by the Fuentes, the VSG ushered in the era of the strong cigar in 1999. Their immediate popularity was due to their beautiful dark color that invigorated the palate with a surge of undeniable power. The VSG is still immensely popular.
Ashton Estate Sun Grown 20-Year-Salute: #8 in Cigar Aficionado’s 2006 “Top 25 Cigars of the Year” with a rating of 90. This is a 6 ¾ by 49 cigar made to celebrate Ashton’s 20-year anniversary in 2005. However, it came out a year late due to the rarity of its wrapper. Its sun-grown, Cuban-seed leaf from Chateau de la Fuente had never been used commercially before. (The Fuente Fuente OpusX uses this farm’s shade-grown wrapper). It was no easy task getting new Ashtons at that time but when the ESG finally made its debut, it was well received. ESG has been dubbed the “Velvet Hammer” for its sneaky strength.
Ashton Virgin Sun Grown Spellbound: #7 in Cigar Aficionado’s 2005 “Top 25 Cigars of the Year” with a rating of 93, and #7 in Cigar Aficionado’s 2004 “Top 25 Cigars of the Year” also rated 93. The boxed pressed VSG definitely sparked a trend in 1999 for strong cigars. The Fuente Fuente Opus X was already on the market as a successful and powerful cigar, but after VSG arrived, many cigar makers went to their tobacco suppliers hoping to duplicate the strength. At 7 ½ x 54, the Spellbound is definitely leathery/cedary mouthful. Ashton has made every effort to increase production, yet the VSG remains in short supply.
Ashton Heritage Puro Sol Robusto: #10 in Cigar Aficionado’s 2008 “Top 25 Cigars of the Year” rated 92. This series was made with thin Cameroon wrappers grown by the Merrapfel family in the jungles of western Africa which had long been out of Levin’s reach in that it was earmarked for Fuente’s Hemingway, Don Carlos and other Fuente cigars. Levin was able to get just enough of this toothy leaf to create the Ashton heritage Puro Sol. Levin had the cigar world expecting ultra-powerful, yet this smoke is all about balance and elegance.
Ashton Heritage Puro Sol Belicoso No.2: #21 in Cigar Aficionado’s 2004 “Top 25 Cigars of the Year” rated 91. This line has four sizes, the best of which is the Belicoso No. 2. It measures 4 7/8 inches by 49 ring.
Ashton Cigars is a brand that offers a blend for almost any palate. No matter what Ashton you choose, you will be assured you are smoking a brand that is unsurpassed in quality and consistency giving you many hours, months, and years of pure cigar smoking pleasure.
With the release of their new Asylum Cigars, Kevin Baxter and Tom Lazuka invite aficionados to explore a reality of flavorful profiles in this innovative line of medium strength Nicaraguan puros. These great sticks are affordably priced and produced in Miami by Christian Eiroa of Tabacaleras Unidas to provide aficionados with a "e;Refuge from Reality"e;, as they put it.
Eiroa is well-known for his successful Camacho lines. Eiroa co-owned Tabacos Rancho Jamastran with his father, Julio, before Davidoff Cigars purchased it in 2008. In the future, Tabacaleras Unidas will locate its factory in Danlí, Honduras, while a factory in the United States has been chosen to produce these fine stogies for the company.
Released in tandem with their second line, Asylum 13, Asylum Cigars explode on the palate and are represented in four vitolas: Toro (6 x 50), Petit Corona (4 x 44), Gigante (6 x 60) and Torpedo (6 x 54). Rolled with the finest Nicaraguan tobaccos, Baxter set out to create blends that leave cigar smoking enthusiasts pleased at a price that makes them affordable enough to be daily smokes.
Asylum cigars are wrapped in rich, oily dark brown wrappers which have just a few minor veins. These handsome sticks have a nice heft to them and also sport adroitly formed triple caps. The cold draw proves a rich sweet profile, and includes caramel and honey.
After a custom trim and a quick light, deep smoked earthy flavors of leather, oak, pepper and spiced wood notes abound. The spice and pepper medley soon softens as a hint of saltiness enters the profile. The draw has been described by some as amazing, while the smoke is said to be plentiful, the white as snow ash holding firm.
Upon reaching the second third, it has been noted that the pepperiness abates, though all of the other flavors remain. They are joined by a delicious and slight sweet cocoa flavor with a hint of coffee. A deep smoky flavor is punctuated with a combination of pepper and oak spice that lingers on the palate.
Flavorful smokiness continues through the rest of the Asylum cigars, and is accented with the delicious coffee, cocoa, leather, oak and spiciness that continue throughout the rest of the smoke. A bit of maple syrup flavoring lends a slight sweetness to the profile, which completes the complex taste that these premium cigars provide.
The construction, flavor and burn of this line are as good as one would expect from a premium stick. The stogie requires the occasional touch up, but it’s nothing to get worked up over. What reviewers find really interesting, though, is the extreme difference between the flavors discovered in the cold draw versus the intriguing flavor profiles of the actual smoke. Most smokers find that these new offerings fall between the medium and full strength categories, which makes them enjoyable for all palates, from the untrained to the experienced connoisseurs. With their superb flavors and affordable price, Asylum Cigars are a must have for every humidor.
The Ave Maria Cigars by AJ Fernandez seem to stay out of the limelight, likely because they do not have an extensive distribution. And yet, they are respected by any aficionado that gets their hands on them. The sticks are billed as just better in every way, using a collection of superior plants and blending processes that make them a strong choice for smokers of all experience levels. They pair this with an ornate look that gives them a quality appearance to go with the well-developed flavors.
The Ave Maria cigars have an Ecuadorian Habano wrapper, a Nicaraguan Habano binder and fillers from Nicaragua and Honduras. The wrapper is a milk chocolate color, though it has a reddish tinge to it in spots. It has a couple of small veins, and though the seams are visible, the whole package is smooth and sharp. The band depicts a Knight Templar brandishing a sword and shield, along with the name of the blend. The smoke is available in eight vitolas, each of them with thematically cohesive designations. These include Ark of the Covenant (4 1/2 x 60), Crusader (5 x 52), Clermont (5 1/2 x 45), Knights Templar (6 x 48), St. George (6 x 54), Barbarossa (7 x 48), Holy Grail (7 x 58) and Charlemagne (7 1/2 x 54). The sticks are striking to look at and the prelight consists of some black pepper and coffee notes.
The initial third of the Ave Maria cigars begins with a quick blast of black pepper. Some reviewers tasted something like allspice underneath the pepper, though it soon moves to the retrohale. In its spot, some coffee, cedar and oak flavors emerge and swirl around a bit before the oak and cedar flavors take hold. The profile has a strong wood flavor that is sustained throughout the first third, though the wood takes on a damp taste as it transitions into the middle third.
During the second third of the Ave Maria cigars, the black pepper and wood flavors are still present, but they are joined with a couple other notes to keep the stick interesting. Some earth and vanilla notes are the most apparent, but some aficionados also detected a little cumin, leather and chili pepper in the mix as well.
In the final portion of the stogie, the wood notes reassert themselves as a collection of grass, leather, and white pepper flavors dance in the background. This combination of flavors is sustained until the end, though the woodiness does ramp up in intensity close the finish.
Reviewers were pleased with the construction and raved about how it performed, with a sharp burn and perfect draw. It’s a medium stick for the most part, though it touches medium-full at times. In summary, it’s the ideal after dinner stick, and it’s ready to show why it deserves more attention from smokers everywhere.
Avo Cigars bloomed out of the legendary partnership and friendship between Avo Uvezian and Hendrik “Heke” Kelner. Avo Uvezian, is a famous jazz musician of Armenian descent who is famous for writing and composing “Broken Guitar’’, which Sinatra remade into the classic, “Strangers in the Night”. It was this love for the finest aspects of life and natural mastery of composition that lead to the company’s founding.
In 1980 Uvezian opened a luxury piano bar in Puerto Rico. It was here he commissioned his first line of hand-rolled cigars. The result was a delicious line, where no detail was left unnoticed, causing a roar among his listeners and patrons. Then, when one of the bar’s regulars asked for multiple stogies, Uvezian’s daughter gave an unknowingly prophetic response, “Daddy, if he wants another, let him pay for it.” A short time later in 1982, Uvezian began searching the Dominican Republic for the finest tobaccos and production factories.
While traveling the island, Uvezian was introduced to Hendrik “Heke” Kelner. Kelner is considered the island’s highest authority on tobacco and was born and raised in a Dominican tobacco family. The company he started in the early eighties, Tobacos Dominicanos, S.A., is now responsible for the entire production of Davidoff, Troya, Griffins and Avo cigars. Once the founding partnership behind Avo Cigars had been formed, the factory selected to produce them was Tabadom. This was the first factory opened by Hendrik Kelner in 1985 and makes more than twenty million cigars annually. In 1987, the duo had readied the first 100,000 smokes to be sold in the American market by 1988. By the third year, over 750,000 were being sold. Today, over two million are crafted and distributed to worldwide markets each year in conjunction with Uvezian, Kelner, and Davidoff.
The incredible success of Avo cigars is due to the outstanding quality of near perfect Dominican tobacco. Among these are the Piloto Cubano grown in the Cibao Valley, which is often coupled with a remarkable Olor binder leaf from Villa Gonzalez. One of the most standout blends to use the tobaccos is the Maduro line. The endearing dark brown and cherry wood color is complemented by a Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper. The fruity leather notes are an expert match to the overall earthy tastes of piney cedar and cocoa creating an expertly composed, extraordinarily smooth, medium-bodied maduro.
Another line often raved about is the XO Trio. This six cigar line beautifully illustrates the similarities and relationship between Uvezian’s love of stogies and music. Each stogie is named after a different musical term and is coupled with a vitola that best captures this meaning. Each smoke of this line uses a spectacular sun-grown Ecuadorian Connecticut shade for the wrapper. This line was designed to pack a mouth-watering but fuller punch than Avo’s other lines. The strength and body desired is consistently given through the brands typical master craftsmanship and the deliciously cultivated earthy tastes of sweetened butter and ginger. The perfect composition of exquisite yet classic flavor notes, and a company born out of love and friendship have always, and will continue to make Avo Cigars an extraordinary brand.
Black Label Trading Cigars began in 2013 by James Brown, a former tour guide who made a living escorting people into the wilds of Central America. With as much time as he spent down south, he also developed a love for tobacco and all of its forms. Eventually, this love led him to create his own boutique tobacco company, one that emphasizes unique flavors and pragmatic sizing. Brown’s philosophy with stogie production is keeping the number of available vitolas to a minimum. After all, if a Robusto and a Toro are all you need, why waste resources making more.
The company’s first wave of releases consisted of six different blends, a huge amount for a brand new boutique. Black Label Trading Cigars was confident with all of them, though, and with a strong foothold in Esteli, it made sense to show off everything the company had developed. It’s also easier for the brand to pull off as it focuses on small batch releases. Currently, there are many blends in the young company’s portfolio, including:
A Nicaraguan Puro, the Redemption is a Maduro stick that combines dark roast coffee, leather, cocoa and dried fruit, with hints of cedar and espresso. It is a dense profile and is full bodied from start to finish, making it a better fit for experienced aficionados.
The Benediction is another Nicaraguan Puro, though it uses a Habano wrapper instead. It isn’t as strong as the Redemption and maintains a comfortable medium-body throughout. Its flavors include tea, cedar, earth, and hay, with a little black pepper to heat it up some.
The filler and binder are both Nicaraguan, but the wrapper this time is an Ecuadorian Habano Rosado. The Rosado on this is darker than normal and offers a full experience like the Redemption. Its flavors consist of earth, cedar, cocoa, coffee, and espresso.
The Royalty comes with an Ecuadorian Corojo wrapper, a Honduran binder and fillers from Nicaragua. Cedar, hay, earth and black pepper are the driving flavors in the blend, and it produces a medium bodied smoke that most aficionados will enjoy.
A medium to full smoke, the Salvation comes with an Ecuadorian Sun Grown Habano, a Honduran binder and more filler from Nicaragua. It is sweeter than the brand’s other blends, producing chocolate, cedar, red pepper and sour citrus flavors.
The last of the six launch blends is the Last Rites, which has an Aged Ecuadorian Maduro wrapper, a Honduran binder and Nicaraguan and Honduran fillers. It’s a medium smoke with an unusual profile, consisting of tea, black pepper, dried fruit, graham cracker, and a slightly sour citrus.
Most of the brand’s sticks come in a Robusto (5 x 54), Toro (6 x 52) and Gran Toro (6 x 60). However, several blends also come with an extra vitola or two. In all, Black Label Trading Cigars lives up to its focus, producing a large range of blends, each of them unique, in a small range of vitolas. It’s a smart concept that is executed to perfection.
The introduction of Boutique Blends Cigars has placed new fire under the Oliveros brand and its continuous industry success. Already a maker of premium Dominican smokes this new branch brought a fresh focus to their production and distribution operations.
While the official launch took place in February of 2012, the new venture began in late 2010 with the creation of the Swag Puro Dominicano. This complex stick was followed by the full-bodied Aging Room Small Batch M356 in late 2011. Both of these highly regarded, Oliveros born smokes became the foundation of a new business extension. The announcement of their growth paralleled the 10th anniversary of the company's start. Rafael Nodal, Hank Bischoff and Dr. Alina Nodal built the cigar distributor from the ground up, securing their highly regarded spot in the industry.
According to company president Rafael Nodal, Boutique Blends Cigars was born on the concept of creating increasingly more complex and exciting combinations. He believes their focus is on the knowledgeable smoker that enjoys stogies with depth and personality. Not only has the transition brought about substantial restructuring, it has led to the introduction of new formulas, as well.
As mentioned, the Swag and Aging Room lines were introduced in anticipation of the company's expansion. The Swag Dominicano is constructed solely of flavorful Dominican Republic tobaccos, while the Aging Room Small Batch M356 is a mix of extra aged Dominican Habano leaves. Both line-ups received Top 25 recognition in 2011 by Cigar Aficionado magazine.
In April 2012, the newly launched brand presented their first stick since formation, the Aging Room Havao Connecticut. Released as a limited short batch it is a Dominican Puro consisting of Ecuadorian grown Connecticut Seed and Dominican Havano Criollo tobaccos. The potent flavors are in full force beginning with the pre-lit hint of lumber and on to the notes of milky spices and freshly cut wood detected throughout its entirety. Later that year at the IPCPR event, the company unveiled Aging Room Small Batch Sumatra Quattro Prensado. Boutique Blends Cigars has created a number of other blends since to fill out the Swag and Aging Room line-ups. In addition to the Puro Dominicano, the Swag collection includes the South Beach and Swag S, while the Aging Room branch has seen the introduction of the M356, AR Maduro, and M21.
Rafael Nodal and his crew have constructed a diverse brand with an ideal balance between the new and old smoking experience. The Swag line provides a conventional mood, whereas Aging Room smokes have a bit more of a modern flair to experience. This spin-off of the Oliveros brand set out to create exciting smokes with multifaceted aromas and flavors and thus far, have proved their success.
Cigar enthusiasts everywhere are jumping for joy over Brick House cigars. This is due in part to the extraordinary flavors and construction of these cigars, and partially because the price per stick is so affordable. This allows smokers to grab a handful and not feel guilty about their cigar smoking habit and the hit their bank account is going to take. Brick house is a brand that is becoming increasingly popular, and with awards for Best Bargain Cigar of 2009 by Cigar aficionado, and Cigar of the Year by Two Guy’s Cigar Shop, it is no wonder that Brick House cigars are winning over even the most seasoned aficionados. After all, it is rare to find a smoke with this kind of quality at a discounted price.
In addition to the flavorful blends, skilled craftsmanship, and unbeatable pricing, Brick House cigars have an intriguing history as well. The brand was proudly introduced by Julius Caesar Newman in 1937. Newman was the founder of the J.C. Newman Cigar Company and set out to create cigars that would bring honor to his family, which is exactly what he accomplished.
Thus, Brick House cigars were assigned their name as a tribute to the home Julius Caesar Newman lived in as a child. The Newman family lived in the only brick house in a small countryside village in Hungary, which doubled as a meeting place for the locals. In fact, the top floor of the home was used for residential purposes, whereas, the ground floor served as a tavern where the locals would congregate nightly to drink, smoke, and eat. Many memories were made in this home, not only among the family, but for the locals as well, making it the perfect setting for Newman to name his new company after.
These cigars are beautifully constructed by hand in Nicaragua. They sport a classy label with gold, red, and black colorings, which encompass an off-white background with embossed details. Another beautiful sight to see is the Nicaraguan Havana Subido wrapper. It is rustic and displays a leathery appearance that is complemented by many intersecting veins. Although these smokes are packed tightly and are firm to the touch without any noticeable soft spots, they provide a perfect draw on the loose side, which almost serves as a direct contradiction to the way these cigars are packed. Thus, it is easy to slide into a relaxed state while toasting one of these little jewels.
Building on construction and performance, the flavors that are compiled into cigars made by Brick House are mind-boggling. Notes of earth, rustic strengths, and sweet creaminess all make their way into the flavor profile. In addition, molasses has also been reported as a nice surprise.
Overall, cigars made by Brick House do not disappoint. Outstanding construction, copious amounts of thick, sweet smoke, and a flavor profile that is rich in complexity are all part of the package. Given the reviews, it is definitely worth picking up a few and storing for later, especially when it is so easy to grab a few for a price that is beyond reasonable.
C and C cigars is a new company that was founded by Joe Chiusano, also on his company’s team are fellow members of the industry, Jeff Aronson, Maurice Tisseur and Shane Hays. Mr. Chiusano was the former president of Cusano until it was purchased by Davidoff in 2009. In November 2011 he debuted three different types of premium products at unbelievably affordable rates.
C and C cigars first product is the Corojo. Corojo is the type of leaf that made Cuban products famous. This product is wrapped in a dark brown wrapper and is triple capped. This is a Cuban practice and is significantly more tedious to create. This practice takes twice as long as the original hand rolled products. Reviewers state that the taste of this product will sneak up on you. They also state that this product is well blended and a great quality, especially for the price. The price on this particular stick has even been called a steal by some reviewers.
The second offering in this line is the Maduro. This product is also wrapped in a dark brown wrapper and triple capped, complimenting the obvious detail oriented products made by C and C cigars. According to some reviews, this product’s quality is better when it is allowed to age in a humidor. Avid smokers often age their favorite stogies using a humidor for up to 10 years to improve their flavor. Also, when reading reviews, many aficionados learn that this specific product is smooth, sweat, and creamy. This can be expected, since the company uses the tobacco’s natural sweetness in this cigar during the curing process.
The third, and last, product is the Connecticut. Like all of this company’s other products, it is wrapped in a high quality dark brown colored paper. However, this particular wrapper is a natural Ecuadorian Connecticut wrapper. According to reviewers this product tastes deep and earthy, and burned very smooth.
C and C cigars has produced a line of products that range in size and price, all of which are affordable. There a 3 sizes available. They are the Churchill, which is the larger size, the Robusto, which is the medium size and Toro, the smaller size. The main reason for the varying sizes is how long it takes the aficionado to smoke them. If the person enjoys smoking longer, they would use a smaller size, if they enjoy smoking for a short period of time the larger product is best for them. Also, the longer the product is, the cooler it burns. Many find that the larger vitolas produce a more flavorful profile.
Having an occasional smoke is something many people enjoy during celebrations and other events. If a consumer is searching for a great new line, they should consider trying C and C cigars. This company takes their time in crafting a superior product and making it affordable. At only $2-3 per stick, that is a far cry from the $20 products other companies have on the market. Reviews indicate that the consumers are very happy with this new company and their affordable yet high quality offerings. As this company grows and is nurtured it will continue to uphold its reputation and continue its success as one of the best companies in the industry.
Cain cigars are one of the fine offerings from the Oliva Cigar Company. Melanio Oliva started growing tobacco in 1886 in Cuba. In the 1920’s his son Hipolito took over. His son Gilberto started brokering tobacco, and the Oliva Cigar Company continues to this day with Gilberto and his family growing Cuban-seed tobacco in Nicaragua.
Cain cigars weren’t introduced until 2009, and they faced plenty of competition from an already heavily saturated cigar market. The Cain cigar comes in four sizes: the Toro is six inches long with a ring gauge of 50, the Robusto is 5.7 inches long with a ring gauge of 50, the Torpedo is six inches long with a ring gauge of 54, and the Double Toro is six inches long with a ring gauge of 60. You can purchase these with either a Habano or a Maduro wrapper.
In Spanish, “Maduro” means “ripe,” and in the context of cigars it speaks to the longer fermentation process, as well as the darker colors achieved in the wrapper. Sometimes, however, it solely refers to the color and not to the wrapper making process, so you can have a cigar that is “Maduro” only in terms of the color. The Habano wrapper is generally a lighter color, but it can also signify that the cigar was produced with Cuban seed, which often means the Cuban tobacco seed was grown elsewhere.
Many of the reviews on the Cain cigar have complimented the wrapper, and have been largely positive. Some commented about how powerful and robust this smoke was, while pointing out how smooth the overall experience of the cigar was as well. Other review comments included things like the ash color being described as light, without flaking, and holding on strongly. One of the reviews focused on the band, which is helpful in protecting the product as it wasn’t further protected by cellophane. The wrapper was complimented on its color, as well as its lacking any large veins. A number of the reviews commented on the spice note in the flavor. There was some commentary that due to the strength of the cigar, it was a good idea to smoke it with a meal. Overall, the reviews appear quite positive for the Cain cigar, and it looks like the folks at the Oliva Company can give themselves a pat on the back for this offering.
Your favorite online cigar shop should be able to help you if you have questions about choosing between the different types of cigars available in the Cain line. Check to see what the shop has to offer you, and that may help determine any questions you may want to ask prior to your phone call. If you decide to try one of these amazing cigars, check out the reviews for yourself and determine which cigar might suit your tastes. You may even be able to find a comparison that will show cigars that are similar to your favorite brand. This is a good way to try new smokes while staying in the parameters of the cigar that you enjoy the most.
Camacho Cigar Company was founded in Miami in 1961 by Simon Camacho. After being exiled from Cuba, Simon persevered through the hardships of living and working on foreign soil, and successfully created a premium handmade cigar company that has enjoyed numerous high rankings. Camacho cigars come exclusively from the furtive Jamastran Valley of Honduras, and are renowned for their extra-flavorful blends. Their cigars are made with original Cuban Criollo and Authentic Corojo seed tobacco and have been hailed as “The Best Habano Outside of Cuba” by many cigar experts and connoisseurs.
Camacho Cigars then changed hands after the death of Simon Camacho to a family of Cuban tobacco growers named Eiroa. The family owned and operated company, Caribe Imported Cigars, acquired Camacho Cigars in 1995 and has taken the brand to new heights. With more than 100 years of tobacco growing history under their belt, The Eiroa’s continue to make new strides in the cigar industry and are now part of a larger highly acclaimed cigar group named Oettinger Davidoff Cigars.
Camacho Cigar Offerings Available:
Ultra Premium Lines: (Limited Editions)
Camacho Triple Maduro: This is this first all maduro cigars on the market. It has Maduro wrapper, binder, and fillers. Five different maduro varieties of Honduran tobacco make up this cigar and the blend exceeds expectations on flavor. This is a full bodied cigar, but not overpowering.
Camacho Diploma: Authentic Corojo tobacco takes the stage in this full-bodied smoke, rich in flavor.
Camacho Select: Having one of the best Cameroon wrappers on the market, this medium to full bodied cigar comes in five sizes.
Camacho Tenth Anniversary: Made to mark Camacho’s 10 years of growing Authentic Corojo tobacco. It has Corojo throughout in its wrapper, binder and filler.
Camacho Liberty 2007 Series: Created as a nod to the U.S.A. Its unique barber pole-like wrapper interchanges light Corojo leaf with dark Maduro Leaf.
Camacho Liberty 2009 Series: created by owner Christian Eiroa to outdo the 2005 Series that was hailed as best Liberty of the bunch.
Premium Lines: (Camacho’s Main Lines Produced in Larger Quantities)
Connecticut: Camacho created this line to satisfy their customers who enjoy a milder smoke. This is a mild to medium-bodied cigar with a filler blend consisting of Dominican and Honduran tobacco. Its Ecuadorian Connecticut shade wrapper lends itself to a smooth smoking experience.
Corojo: According to Camacho, this is the only cigar in the world made of Authentic Corojo tobacco.
Coyolar: The Coyolar is a full bodied smoke that has enjoyed high praise for its exceptional flavor. Its binder, wrapper, and filler are all authentic Coyolar tobacco.
Havana: The Havana line uses authentic Corojo for its filler and binder with a Habana Criollo wrapper, all grown in the Jamastran Valley of Honduras. This is Camacho’s nod to the old-style Cuban cigars and is very similar in flavor.
Core Brands: (Brands that do not reflect the Camacho Name in the Series)
Baccarat the Game: This is a top seller due to its smooth nature and affordable price tag. It is a mild-bodied cigar that has a sweetened tip, excellent for beginners. Its filler is Jamastran Habano; the binder is Mexican Dulce, finishing with a Connecticut wrapper.
La Fontana Consigliere: Christian Eiroa dedicated this cigar to Salvatore Fontana, his mentor and “Consigliere”. This Godfather themed cigar is medium to full-bodied and the three sizes are appropriately named the Part I, II, and III.
LegendArio: This line is Honduran Puro and is medium-bodied.
Camacho Cigars signed a working partnership under the Bayer Food Chain Management program with Bayer CropScience on June 29, 2010. This new union has launched Camacho Cigars as the first and only tobacco company in history to be in compliance with the strict international standards for Food Manufacturing Practices and Good Agricultural Practices, which sets them apart.
Many 19th century advertising, trade and insert materials featuring the Capadura Cigars name are available for sale for stogie enthusiasts looking to own a small piece of history. Capadura cigars came into existence in 1858, when manufacturer and distributor Robert Capadura Brown created the brand, though he did not patent it until 1876. A future stogie powerhouse, Straiton and Storm, absorbed the brand before becoming General Cigar, currently one of the largest manufacturers in the world.
Straiton and Storm resold the Capadura cigars, and today their quality smokes are distributed by the Luba Cigar Corporation, which is run by Ruth Elizabeth Batista. Batista’s business focuses on the quality of the materials and tradition used in the creation of her smokes. Batista is from the Dominican Republic and is part of a family that has been around the industry for decades. As a schoolgirl, she cleaned the manufacturing molds, and as a college student, she worked as a public relations manager for several tobacco companies. Batista knows exactly what goes into making a great smoke.
The Luba Cigar Corporation currently distributes four types of Capadura Cigars: The 808, 848, 898 and the 898 Extra Ligero. Each member of the quartet is available in four sizes: Robusto (50 x 5), Churchill (48 x 7), Torpedo (52x 6 1/2) and Jumbo (60 x 6). The sticks range from mild and agreeable to full-bodied and highly complex, and thus there’s a stogie in there for every level of smoker, from the new beginner to seasoned aficionado.
The 808 features a wrapper made of Ecuadorian-grown Connecticut shade tobacco and a binder of De Olor from the Dominican Republic. The filler is a blend of four types of De Olor and Pilato Cubano. They are all grown in the Dominican Republic and are mild to medium bodied. The initial flavors in the 808 are noted as being both nutty and sweet. Described as mellow and aromatic, the second and final third shift to an earthier layer of flavor.
The 848 is described as a medium-bodied smoke that is beautifully encased with Havana 2000 wrapper leaves that have been cultivated in Nicaragua, and completed with a four filler blend.
The 898 features a Brazilian Arapiraca wrapper, and though the cold draw of the 898 has been said to have a similar flavor to the 808, it is notably spicier once the stick is lit. The contents of the 898 are a Pilato Cubano from the Dominican Republic, and a Corojo from Esteli, Nicaragua. Both the 808 and the 898 are said to pair well with coffee and are recommended for the morning or midday.
The 898 Extra Ligero uses the same tobacco as the regular 898, but with only the highest and strongest leaves to create a more full-bodied smoke.
More than 100 years after the creation of Capadura Cigars, the brand still offers the highest satisfaction and quality to those who give them a try. Being touted as a favorite to stock in one’s humidor, it is not surprising that the future continues to look bright for this outstanding brand.
Knowing the history of one of the greatest tobacco companies in the world leads a person to experience a number ofCarlos Torano cigars. Spanning four generations, this is a family that believes in excellence, and above all else, the importance of family. Originally hailing from Spain, Don Santiago left for Cuba in 1916. Upon arriving and seeing the beauty of Cuba, Don Santiago fell in love with all things tobacco.
Today, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Cuba are all homes to these excellent stogies available in all sizes, shapes, flavors, and strengths. A single Carlos Torano cigar is said to be a wonderful experience indeed. Each one combining time honored traditions with superior tobaccos hand-rolled to perfection, and carefully inspected for superiority.
The family tradition started with Don Santiago, but three brothers soon joined him in Cuba. Even today, this family is the leader of all tobacco products in Cuba. These tried and true traditions have weathered many changes through four generations, including political unrest and violence. Through it all, the family still believes in the importance of staying together and staying strong. As such, the tobacco products that are produced are all specifically designed to give the best experience to the smoker.
What are some popular Carlos Torano cigars?
Cameroon 1916 – This is an amazing celebration of a favorite Cameroon tobacco. The Cameroon wrapper is deliciously designed using only the best of family traditions. The binder and filler are a blended tobacco combining Nicaraguan and Honduran tobaccos. These stogies are wildly popular because of the strong cedar flavor and aroma. They are very aromatic and reasonably priced.
Exodus 1959 – What is it about the Exodus that makes this an amazing smoke? In 1959, political unrest and embargoes slowed down the export of all products from Cuba to the United States. To continue selling to the world market, the production was moved to either Nicaragua or the Dominican Republic. These smokes were created to present a wonderful blend of tobaccos from different countries: Mexico, Nicaragua, Dominican Republic, and Costa Rica. These are extremely popular stogies displaying the excellence of pre-embargo mastery and craftsmanship.
Reserva Selecta – These are the crème de la crème when it comes to a Carlos Torano cigar. The wrapper is an aromatic and beautiful cedar. Each smoke is carefully placed in a real crystal tube. Sporting the popular Connecticut Shade leaves, these smokes also come with the delicious Costa Rica native Madura tobaccos.
Tribute – Perhaps the most rare of this family’s stock would be the Tribute. It is full-bodied and deliciously grown under the Costa Rican sun. These are the best of the year paying “Tribute” to the most exquisite plants and tobaccos of the day. Each year something special is offered making each year its own spectacular combination of tobaccos. These are usually difficult to get a hold of, but are a wonderful addition to any humidor.
Carlos Torano cigars are a wonderful blend of tobaccos from a variety of locations and created with family tradition. Making a great product only happens when time-honored traditions come into play, putting one product above all the rest.
Casa Fernandez cigars are a popular type of stogie known for its affordable excellence. There are three styles within this family: the Aganorsa Leaf Robusto, the Aganorsa Leaf Torpedo, and the Miami Petite Robusto. Each stick shares a number of qualities with one another yet remains unique in strength and flavor. The low price and excellent quality guarantee a place in any home humidor, and its popularity makes it easy to find at any favorite retailer.
The Aganorsa Leaf Robusto measures in at 5 by 52, and is available either singularly or in a box of 15. The wrapper is a sun grown and cured Corojo tobacoo with a rich, elegant flavor. The Nicaraguan filler and binder tobaccos are constructed masterfully into a superb stogie that is said to please all the senses. The notes of coffee and nuts combine with a strong earthy spice that makes for a great medium-bodied stick that borders on a full bodied offering.
The Aganorsa Leaf Torpedo measures in at 6.25 by 52, and is available either singularly or in a box of 15. Similar in style to the Aganorsa Leaf Robusto, the Torpedo simply comes in a different size. The nutty goodness is elegantly wrapped and presented in a nice package so it makes for great gift giving. This stogie is a popular choice for smokers wanting to try Casa Fernandez cigars.
The Miami Petite Robusto measures in at 4.5 by 52, and is available either singularly or in a box of 15. Authentic Cuban seeds make for a deliciously strong flavor, and the Nicaraguan tobacco leaves used for the binder and filler are also aromatic and flavorful. It has a complex and balanced full-bodied strength for people that want a stronger stick.
All Casa Fernandez cigars share common traits starting with a superb blend of tobaccos. Each is wrapped professionally and by hand to guarantee a better stogie, and there are minimal veins on a dark, chocolate colored finish. The thick earthy smell is present from the first whiff, and there are notes of spice for the smoker’s pleasure. The initial impression is said to be quite remarkable, and the balanced complexity makes this a premium stogie.
The smoke is described as thick and fragrant, and the burn is even. The ash is firm so there are no burn holes on a favorite lapel, and there is little need to relight because the stick remains lit, unless the smoker sets the stogie down for some time.
The top band is good looking with gold and black highlighting the calligraphy-style “F”, and the bottom band is just as impressive as the top band. These Casa Fernandez cigars have a good tight construction so they have a slow burn, and reviewers thoroughly appreciate the solid construction and handsome appearance. Each stick tastes uniquely different thanks to its hand-rolled construction, and the flavor remains consistent.
Casa Fernandez cigars make a good gift for any occasion, whether for a colleague or a best friend. The price is just right, and even for the newcomer, these are a superb stick. The strong nicotine flavor appeals to more smokers and definitely turns heads. The keepsake box is made of strong wood and ensures a good environment and climate to ensure freshness. When the box is emptied the smoker can use it to house other favorite stogies. At this price the aficionado should grab them while they are still available as they are going fast.
Cigar smoking is a lifestyle in and of itself, and one that is made more enjoyable with cigar accessories.Cigar accessories let you enjoy cigars whether you are smoking at the moment or not.Whether you are in the office, at home, or in the kitchen, you can always have something cigar-related close at hand to smoke a cigar with or to help you look forward to one at the end of the day.
The Cigar Minder is a cigar accessory that is perfect for every golfer.It is a cigar clip that will attach to any golf cart so you can carry your cigars from green to green.The primary clip attaches to the golf cart and the secondary clip holds the cigars.This prevents your cigars from getting lost, broken, or stepped on.
Fire codes will keep you from smoking in the office, but no force in the world can keep you from drinking coffee from a cigar mug.You can find your freedom from the micromanaging rules of bourgeois social conditioning with Cigar Coffee Mugs.Not only do they feature beautiful images of cigars, but they also hold a great deal of coffee and are dishwasher safe.
Almost one hundred years ago, Don Salvatore began the tradition of hand-crafted humidors.This endeavor later blossomed into the creation of all types of quality cigar accessories.Take, for instance, the Havana Draw Enhancer™.Its pen style has been proven over and over again to be the best way for improving the draw and eliminating the plugs in cigars of all shapes and sizes.This is because of the Enhancer’s stainless steel shaft designed with angular, diamond cut serrations.
You can insert the Enhancer in either end of the cigar, and you can make multiple channels on the same cigar.This not only breaks up the plugs in your cigar, but it also eliminates the tunnel burning that other products often create.You can also draw the Havana Draw Enhancer Pen Style partway through the stub of a cigar and smoke it all the way to the end without burning your fingers.The Enhancer fits right into your pocket thanks to its ingenious design and can be carried with you anywhere.
You can show your loyalty to your favorite brands with these golf cigar accessories.These magnetic Golf Ball Markers clip right to your cap or golf bag. They will not fall off because they are very small and lightweight, and each marker has a strong magnet to hold it in place.Every marker carries the logo of one of the great cigar brands.Golf Ball Markers are great gifts to yourself and any other smoker that loves the game of golf.
Ashtrays rank among the most important cigar accessories.Now, in celebration of the world famous Tatuaje cigars, you can recline next to an ashtray that celebrates and compliments this Nicaraguan classic.These ashtrays are as beautiful as they are practical.
Exactly what would the world be like without cigar ashtrays?What would we do?
What DO WE DO when there is none to be found at the table?
This is the million dollar question of the day.
No doubt we have all been to those establishments that seem to lack awareness of the basic needs of smokers.They give us this little place to sit in the corner, or maybe even an entire patio.But when we need an ashtray, there is none to be found.
We often wonder at some times if we are being quietly judged.We probably are.When we consider that the current media campaigns against smoking have affected all levels of society, we can see how one of the more simple pleasures of life has become complicated and not so simple anymore.
Well, in spite of the attempts of the multitude to tell you that you are wrong, you are not wrong.Nor do you have to react to these little “messages” with bad form.
You can respond quietly and positively to these little challenges of social conditioning not by protesting or walking out of the room, but by simply bringing your own cigar ashtray to the table.
That’s right.With one simple, matter-of-fact act of self-reliance, you can show the world that your life is going quite beautifully and quite well with a cigar in the one hand, and your own personal cigar ashtray advertising your favorite brand or favorite design right there on the table for all to see.
This is a walk-softly-and-carry-a-big-cigar way of saying you intend to live long and prosper by sheer willpower alone.
Of course, because cigar smoking is just as much a matter of style as it is of personal enjoyment, you should choose a cigar ashtray that adds an additional touch of sense and sensibility to the calm repose and sheer pleasure of the present moment.
After all this is your moment, your cigar, your illustrious ashtray.Period.
Let’s take a look now at some of the unique designs that will help you state your case for uniqueness, freedom, and your own individualized view of the world:
The jet black Ashton is an iconic symbol blazoned in the minds of us all.This four cigar ashtray features the gold Ashton brand and crown around the edges.Thousands of these are found throughout the world in cigar shops, public cafes, and in the private dens of quiet smokers late at night.When they are not found, they are brought by cigar smokers as encouraged above.
Ceramic Car-Shaped Cigar Ashtrays
Ashton car-shaped cigar ashtrays are chic models of your favorite classics that let you savor the fullness of your own classic moment.La Aroma de Cuba Car Ashtrays add character and ambience to any setting, indoors or out.
Every single cigar ashtray in this collection is hand-made and is a truly unique and beautiful creation.Very functional, yet also extremely decorative, they are available in many different materials including amber, onyx, tortoise shell, burnt clay, and conference bronze.
Classic Silver Color
This car cigar ashtray fits into the cup holder in your vehicle.
Porcelain ashtrays look good anywhere you place them, wherever you go.
This ashtray is deep and shaped like a bowl.Its huge size makes it able to hold a mountain of debris, including ash, cigar butts, matches, even cigar bands.
If you want to make a statement of TRUE CLASS and show the world just how conscientious smokers really can be, this ashtray is the ticket for you.
Since people don`t want to litter the table, they will very often toss the cigar cellophane and cedar packaging sleeves into the ashtray. Now, with Stinky’s big bowl design, you can smoke all evening without the ashtray spilling over and making a mess.
Cigarcutters remove or put holes in the caps of cigars before you smoke them.There are three methods by which Cigar Cutters can cut a cigar.One of these is the simple straight cut, which involves simply slicing the end off of the cigar cap.The other is called the wedge or V cut.This kind of cut leaves a portion of the cap in place and simply cuts a wedge from the middle of it.The third type of cut is known as the hole punch.This actually creates a hole in the center of the cap and lets you to draw smoke through the hole.You must be very precise in selecting the size of your hole punch.If you punch a hole that is too small, you will have tar buildup around the edges and it will affect the flavor of the cigar. Many cigar smokers prefer a cigar cutter to a punch for this reason.
Straight cuts are typically made by either a single-blade or double-blade cigar cutter.Both types look like little guillotines.A good number of people prefer double-bladed guillotines because they say they make cleaner cuts than straight blades.This, of course, depends greatly on the type of cigar you are smoking, and, to a very real extent, on your own abilities in cutting cigars.
V-cutters are intended to make even cuts from both sides of the cigar.They go deeper than double-bladed and single-bladed cigarcutters.Many smokers often argue that because of this V-cutters are much better to use when smoking heavier gauge cigars.
All sorts of debates rage throughout the cigar-smoking centers of the world as to which one of these methods of cutting a cigar is really the best method to use.All sorts of debate also rages over which cigar cutter will take the cap off better than all the rest.
At the end of the day, we really do not want to argue here.We simply wish to point out that it all boils down to two very simple things, really.One is these things is size of the cigar you are smoking.The other thing is the burn rate at which you wish to smoke your cigar.
Many of you have been smoking cigars for years now, and you know what your own personal opinions and preferences are in these matters.We know you can make an intelligent decision about which cigar cutter will work best for you.Our job is simply to help you find it here on our site so you can obtain your heart’s desire.
Serious Cigars seeks to give you all the options without taking an official stance on which type of cut—or which type of cigar cutter—is better than all the rest.
A few of our more notable types and brands include, but are not limited to, the following:
This is the most basic type of cigar cutter. The Sure Cut single-blade disposables feature a back plate that keeps you from accidentally cutting off the cap of the cigar.One precision slice will take off just a smidge from the end so you can enjoy a long, satisfying draw.The prevention of a mis-cut keeps the wrapper from unraveling as well.The Sure Cut can also be used to cut Torpedo Shapes with 2-3 quick cuts.
Many smokers prefer a double blade cigar cutter because they find it easier to make a cleaner cut.Serious Cigars has Sure Cut double-blade models, plus a few more styles that you can choose from.Our Savoy Double Blade cigarcutters are some the sharpest we sell.Made from stainless steel, each one comes with a leather pouch and carries a lifetime warranty.They are ideal gifts for the smokers in your circle of friends.
The Davidoff Cigar Knife is one of the most sophisticated tools you can use or give as a gift. Built like a pocketknife, it is so much more than that.Its most unique features is the punch cigar cutter that looks like a blade, but features raised circles with sharp edges on the flat of the steel.You can use any one of these three circles to make whatever size punch you wish simply by pressing the cap against the circle and rotating it to make an incision.
With the prices of stogies rising, it is great to know that there are wonderful cigar reviews done by many different connoisseurs and aficionados. This information is very helpful because these evaluations cover many different areas that concern smokers. Information such as how much the smoke is if only buying one or how much one can expect to pay for a box of them is all included.
Cigar reviews also include information about where to find the rarer stogies. Some are produced in a limited quantity because they are each made by hand. Other reasons might include an extended maturation time that may be demanded by the manufacturer. This can make rare sticks even harder to find.
Other things that are covered in these evaluations of the various different smokes would include but not be limited to the following:
• Wrapper information
• Filler information
• Origin of the tobacco
• Dry draw analysis
• Taste and flavor notes
• Rating of the body (i.e. medium or full bodied)
• Complexity of the smoke
• Description of the various stages of the stogie
• Recommended beverages as an accompaniment such as water, wine or bourbon
There are many different types and sizes of stogies on the market. Cigar reviews help the aficionado or the novice smoker sort through all of them without having to purchase each and every one. This is especially helpful because there are new tobacco manufacturers as well as stogie producers coming into the market each year. It would take a humidor that was the size of a small skyscraper to house them all and a bank account that had an endless supply of cash.
Cigar reviews can also allow for the person giving the analysis the chance to voice their own personal opinion about the smoke and why this is their overall rating of the smoke. This would be helpful to the person reading the evaluation and discovering that this particular stick has flavor notes of cocoa which is a flavor that they do not care for and would want to avoid. This keeps that person reading the analysis from wasting money on a stogie that they would never enjoy.
Cigar reviews are also helpful because they allow for the truth to be told through the typical hype that is always surrounding a new release by a company or even a new company. Many stogie shops include an area on their websites for people to post their various different opinions about the smokes. This gives each customer something to judge their next purchase on as a basis.
These evaluations can also help a person decide upon the perfect gift for a friend, family member, colleague, co-worker or client. An example would be avoiding a stogie that had strong notes of coffee because the person that will be receiving does not enjoy or drink coffee.
These evaluations are also quite helpful because most manufacturers do not disclose a lot about their products because they want the consumer to buy them and try them for themselves.
A cigar shop is a retail establishment that exists either as a storefront or an online catalogue.A walk-in store gives the smoker access to the most premium, fine cigars.It also gives the new smoker or the smoker on a budget, access to less expensive or newer brands.
One of the great things about a storefront cigar shop is it also gives smokers a place to actually smoke, and it also maintains a wait staff who can attend to clientele and answer questions.
An online cigar shop is a virtual realm that replaces the old storefront.It transcends geography, and it gives smokers from all over the world access to a very large inventory.A community management program is initiated to provide clients with customer service, specials, and information.Online cigar stores also offer a variety of prices so people on a budget can also enjoy fine tobacco.
Regardless of whether or not you are walking into a storefront cigar shop or surfing the catalog of an online equivalent, you can always count on finding premium cigar brands, less well-known but very good brands, cigar lighters, cigar cutters, and cigar humidors.
Many cigar stores also carry specialty cigarettes, such as electronic cigarettes, or cigarettes made from additive free tobacco.Many also carry pipes and pipe tobacco as well.
Gift items are also very popular through online resources.Cigars can now be purchased in gift packages, and special accessories like coffee mugs, special ashtrays, and golf cart clips can also be obtained. Such gifts can be great gestures of appreciation in a world that seems to be appreciating smokers less and less on a daily basis.
But who needs them when we have each other, right?
As things have changed in this great and mysterious world that we live in, so, too, has the old imagery and feel of many cigar shops changed.What we often visualize as iconic is really a memory of a bygone era.
That is not to say that you will not find the same images and motifs present in a modern cigar lounge or store, but there is a greater diversity of products and clear evidence of globalization in even the smallest of haunts these days.
In the old days there was little difference between what we now call a cigar lounge and a cigar shop.Both were places to purchase and smoke cigars, and smaller stores had limited inventories or maybe even only a handful of brands to offer.In those days as well, many European immigrants to the United States were truly and utterly illiterate and could not read even so much as a sign over the door of a store.
So it was decided by cigar store owners at that time to symbolize the establishment with a wooden statue of a Native American man or woman standing at the door.This symbol was chosen because Native Americans introduced Europeans to tobacco when first contact was made between the two cultures.
Today, it is considered bad form to use a racial symbol like this.It promotes a negative stereotype of Native American people, and it is also no longer necessary, considering how European-Americans have since learned to read, and even shop online.
Our Cigar Shop is located in Houston Texas, however we also service all 50 states including New York NY, Los Angeles CA, Miami, FL. Chicago, IL. Denver CO., El Paso, Texas, Dallas TX DFW, San Antonio, TX, Austin, TX, Boise ID, Atlanta GA, Raleigh-Durham NC, WashingtonC, Albuquerque NM, Huntsville AL, Fayetteville AR, N Dorfolk VA , Madison WI.
people wonder if a cigar guide is truly necessary for a smoker to find what they
are looking for. Necessity is not the issue here; expediency is. A guide of
any kind makes a search of any kind easier to pursue, and more likely to pay off
in the end.
In this case, a cigar guide provides cigar smokers with
all kinds of information that pertains to both cigars themselves and the
general world of cigar smoking as a whole. Things such as local bans on
smoking, information on humidors, new
and exciting cigar packs as gift items, you may not have thought of, and
cigar etiquette for cigar lounge aficionados are all explained in sufficient
detail to make good decisions and to act appropriately.
Much needed advice for beginning smokers is almost
always included. After all, we were all once beginners, and none of us would
have stuck with it had there been someone or something to give us the basics of
brand and etiquette.New smokers will also gain from these publications
(both print and online) a wealth of information about cigar products like
humidors, cigar cutters, how to prepare and install humidifiers, and helpful
tips about health and legal issues that relate to cigars.
A cigar guide is a resource for the inquisitive, but
somewhat shy, new smoker who does not want to risk embarrassment by asking too
many questions at a cigar lounge.
Much to their surprise, the average beginner tends to
be a little shocked at how truly different smoking a cigar is in comparison to a
cigarette. For instance, a cigar has to be cut a certain way before it is
smoked in order for a person to draw smoke from the end. This is not necessary
with a cigarette. Another difference is the way a person has to light a cigar.
The end must be lit deliberately and evenly, otherwise, the cigar will not burn
evenly. Perhaps the greatest difference, however, is the way a person actually
smokes a cigar. Cigar smoke is drawn into the mouth and tasted, but it is never
inhaled like cigarette smoke.
Making these mistakes in a cigar lounge can be so
embarrassing a person tries a cigar once and never tries one again. That is,
unless he or she learns NOT to make them by reading a cigar guide first. With a
little bit of motivated self-study, one soon learns that the world of cigars is
not about being an elitist, but rather being confident and classy in a way that
silently communicates that you know what you are doing no matter what you are
doing or where.
This is also the best place to find information on how
individual brands of cigars are made. Most seasoned smokers prefer to smoke
hand-rolled cigars. Machine-rolled cigars are considered cheap. The
cigar connoisseur needs to know up front what he or she is buying before money
is actually put on the table.
Cigar aficionados also care a great deal about cigar
country of origin. Nations like Honduras, Nicaragua, and the Dominican Republic
are world famous for their cigar quality. A cigar guide can and should give as
much information on where a particular manufacturer grows the tobacco used in
its cigar fillers and wrappers.
Cigar guides will often publish news on the latest
developments in the cigar world. also provide information on what is happening
in the world’s top cigar companies.
There is wealth of information online regarding cigar smoking & etiquette. Some of this material deals with how you actual handle the cigar itself. Other material deals with how your actions impact both smokers and non-smokers around you. We will be dealing with both aspects of cigar etiquette over the course of time.
Today however, we are going begin by looking at some simple points that pertain to both dynamics.
The first of these points deals with where you can actually smoke. It is a given that any of us should have to right to smoke in our own home or on our own property. That is not so much a matter of cigar etiquette but personal freedom and rights to privacy.
The question marks start getting drawn in our minds when we walk across the thresholds of our homes. At this point, we are in public space, and really need something of a roadmap to follow regarding where we can and cannot smoke.
Assume that any café or bar you visit is going to regard cigar smoking with even more disapproval than cigarette smoking. Smoking, period, is one of the new targets of the politically correct movement. It only creates disturbance to go against this grain, no matter how much we all at times resent it.
Good cigar etiquette calls for class and sensibility on a non-reactive level. If you know you that you and your cigar are not welcome in an establishment, you have a choice to either be gracious, and wait until you go home, or politely claim your own freedom by choosing to go elsewhere.
Good Friends and Special Occasions
Our friends accept us for who we are and sometimes even love us more for our flaws than our virtues.
Nevertheless, they may not always be able to accept our cigar smoking habit. Many people are allergic to any type of smoke, and smoking cigars makes for a notoriously strong smoke to the nostrils of the non smoker.
Cigar etiquette here depends on two factors. One is non-smoker tolerance to smoke, and the other is ventilation. You will find that even your closest friends probably cannot take cigar smoke in the enclosed space of their own apartments or homes. Some who smoke themselves may not want the smell of smoke on their furniture or curtains. On the other hand, nine out of ten probably will not mind one bit if you smoke outside where the wind can blow it away and where the ash can fall on the ground.
Basic cigar etiquette here is very simple and along the lines of other social considerations: ask your host first what he or she is comfortable with and abide by the rules of the home you are in.
To Ash or Not to Ash
Unlike cigarette smoking, which requires constant ashing to keep the end free from ash, letting the ash build up on the cigar is considered good etiquette. Ash actually keeps the smoke cooler and lets you enjoy cigar flavor more.
Letting the ash build up on your cigar also makes you appear more relaxed and at ease. You communicate an aura of neurosis if you are constantly tapping your cigar over an ashtray.
On the other hand, if you let the ash fall on something expensive, this is not going to be good either.
A good rule of cigar etiquette to follow then is very simple: The more expensive the item UNDER your ash, the more often you should keep the foot of your cigar near a cigar ashtray.
It is acceptable cigar etiquette to keep the band on the cigar
There are some people who say that it is bad cigar etiquette to leave a band on a cigar.
Where do people get such ideas?
There is nothing wrong with letting others know what brand you are smoking. In fact, it can often be a great way to start a polite conversation about brands without what might be an unwelcome opinion.
By letting people see, comment, and then responding graciously with your point of view, you can show much greater dignity and cigar etiquette than trying to hide your personal tastes and make too much of an attempt to fit in.
The cigar industry is full of camaraderie, good people, and memorable experiences. While so many businesses focus on maximizing profit and selling unremarkable products, cigar makers focus on the people that will enjoy and appreciate their efforts and creativity. Serious Cigars also believes that people come first, and this belief is the inspiration behind the Cigar Spotlight.
The Cigar Spotlight will regularly showcase some of the most interesting people in the industry, regardless of where they work or what they do. Most aficionados are familiar with the owners and master blenders related with various cigars, but it requires the effort of each and every person to make the business run smoothly. The Cigar Spotlight will be more focused on these less-known, yet extremely important people. As Serious Cigars grows, and we forge more connections with cigar producers, farmers and blenders, we expect to find an abundance of interesting people who are worth talking about.
The aim of the Cigar Spotlight is to allow some of these folks the opportunity to introduce themselves, talk about their background, and share some of their favorite aspects and memories of working within the industry. Most people in the industry have been around cigars for most of their lives, and many have family members in the business as well. These people invariably have some of the best stories regarding this prestigious industry. With the Cigar Spotlight, we hope to give our visitors further insight into the industry, and the people who make our favorite hobby possible.
Corporate gift baskets can be the perfect option for present choices, when it comes to deciding what to give to clients. Whether someone in the company puts them together himself, or the company purchases them from a local or online vendor, these can be the ideal present giving option. Whether the company is recognizing a cigar smoker with an award of some sort, someone’s birthday, or is sending out the typical holiday greeting, including cigars is an idea whose time has come. Rather than send out a generic card with a generic greeting, pick something like corporate gift baskets that can be personalized with only a tiny bit more effort, like a personalized batch of stogies for a particular client. Doing a product run that ends up with a hundred (or more) identical coasters, or visors, or cell phone covers, is likely only going to make the recipient feel like the company is trying to brand them. However, if the company provides some delectable treat, like some well-reviewed smokes from a cigar shop, how much different might the response be?
If recipients of corporate gift baskets feel more appreciated due to the present itself, how much more likely is it that they will continue to want to do business with the sending company, and how much more appreciated can one make a smoker feel than by sending him his favorite sticks? There is not much more a company can do to engender good will than making the customers or clients feel appreciated. If customers feel appreciated, they do not feel that they are just looked at by the corporation as a bunch of dollar signs. Interestingly enough, feeling that the company is not only out to get their every last dollar might assist in increasing brand loyalty from the clients or customers. Rather than choose something generic just like everyone else, choose to stand out from the crowd and choose a present that can be individualized for the client, like premium stogies.
Of course, corporate gift baskets can come in more generic styles or a more personalized style. Depending on the relationship between the company and the clients, the company will have to decide which is more appropriate. If a company is sending out presents to hundreds of clients with limited personal knowledge, the more widely appealing present might be the best bet. Someone on the recipient’s end will likely enjoy those stogies even if they are not the most personalized present possible. However, if the sending company has some personal interactions with the recipients and knows some of the likes and dislikes, the company representative can rarely go wrong choosing something with that particular individual in mind. Do not just send stogies if the particular preferred brand is known. Why send just any smokes if the contact knows that this recipient’s all-time favorite stick is a particular premium option?
Choosing the corporate gift baskets wisely can have some rather far-reaching effects. Most companies would not complain if their presents led the customers to feeling more appreciated and, in turn, continued to work with the company for the foreseeable future.
A passionate group of employees formed Crowned Heads cigars in 2010. The CAO International Company was heading for a merger. The employees felt sure that there would be something lost in the transition. They knew that great tobacco makers and growers were going to end up losing their jobs and that these artisans would lose the ability to offer the world their knowledge, know-how, expertise and experience. Therefore, this very passionate group decided to strike out on their own and offer the world their own brand, Crowned Heads cigar. The company offers their first line, Four Kicks.
This line is available in the following sizes:
• Corona Gorda (5 5/8 x 46)
• Robusto (5 x 50)
• Sublime (6 x54)
• Piramide (6 1/8 x 52).
From the beginning, Crowned Heads cigar has offered their Four Kicks brand. This stick features a wrapper that is Habano Ecuadorian. The binder and the filler are Nicaraguan. They are made at the Tabacalera La Allianza factory in the Dominican Republic where the soil is rich and fertile.
A reviewer recently decided to offer the specifications on the Corona Gorda from the Four Kicks line offered by Crowned Heads cigars. The smoke was described as having a few veins but not being what might be considered a more rustic type of stick. There was also an aroma described that smelled like Hungarian sweet paprika. The taste profile featured citrus notes such as those found in lemon or grapefruit. The citrus was said to be just a bit on the tangy side and not like that of the sweetness in an orange. There was also a taste of leather and earth flavoring that could be detected through the wonderful tobacco notes, as well.
Throughout the first two thirds of the smoke, it was said to have the addition of spicy and sweet overtones. This was along with the nuttiness that was detected with the leathery and sweet paprika spiciness found early on. A light hint of a peppery sensation was also noticeable and it sort of ebbed and peaked at times, but not so much that it was too bothersome or too hot.
Overall, all reviewers that were polled agreed that Crowned Heads cigars had outdone themselves with the creation of the Four Kicks line. This line is fairly new and makes many of their different sizes extremely difficult to find. However, it is important to note that there are many reviews offered about these smokes. This is a significant fact because it is often not the case of a product that has only been in production for a year or so. This alone signifies that people are raving about these cigars. Of course, because they are so hard to find, it also tells the aficionado that they are definitely one of the most sought after new products on the market.
The name of the line came from a Kings of Leon song. The song spoke to the dilemma that a few employees were in during a merger that they feared would damage their own personal vision for what a smoke should be. Thus, this new line was born.
More than a year has passed since the death of Rolando Reyes Sr., founder of Puros Indios and maker of Cuba Aliados cigars. Now under the presidency of Reyes’ grandson, Carlos Diez, Puros Indios – officially renamed to Reyes Family Cigars in 2007 -- continues to thrive on the legacy Reyes left behind.
Reyes’ lifelong affection for stogies began when he was only nine years old. Even as a young child, he knew he wanted to be a tobacconist. He set out to learn the craft of cigar making at various factories in his native Cuba, soaking up as much information as possible and honing his skills. As a young man, Reyes opened a small factory of his own in his hometown Las Villas and named it Los Aliados.
In 1968, Fidel Castro’s communist regime confiscated Reyes’ factory and tried to exploit his skills by sending him to work in another cigar factory. Reyes refused, however, and took his punishment, working in the rice fields instead. In the early 1970s, finally, Reyes was permitted to leave for the United States under the condition that he would not return to his native country during his lifetime.
While Reyes was forced to leave family and property behind, no one could strip him of his tenacity, or his beloved craft. Two years after settling in Union City, New Jersey, Reyes built a new factory there in 1973 and renamed his company Cuba Aliados Cigars. The name is reportedly taken from a bus line and, translated into English, means “Allied Cuba.” The brand enjoyed tremendous success, especially during the 1970s and 80s.
Reyes briefly experimented with relocating his company to Miami and the Dominican Republic, only to eventually take his factory to Danli, Honduras, where it remains today as an industry staple. For a decade or so, Reyes temporarily lost the rights to the Cuba Aliados Cigars name in the 1990s, but he managed to win back the trademark in 2004. Meanwhile, however, Reyes developed a new brand: Puros Indios.
Cuba Aliados Cigars remain in production today, with versions of the stogie manufactured at both the Danli and the newer Miami factory. An Anniversary edition is also available.
The original, Danli-produced version is available in seven sizes: Lance, Piramide #2, Regordo, Belicoso, Piramide #3, Toro Extra and Robusto. The stogies feature a Nicaraguan Corojo wrapper and an Ecuador Sumatra binder. The filler is made of finest Nicaraguan and Dominican Piloto Cubano. This strain of hybrid tobacco has an interesting history all its own, being grown from Cuban seeds in the rich soils of first the Dominican Republic and later Nicaragua. The tobacco is said to have a rich, robust and earthy flavor. Throughout the various lines and sizes, the brand is described as medium to full-bodied.
In addition to Cuba Aliados Cigars, the Reyes Family also continues to produce the Puros Indios brand, as well as the Classic, Cienfuegos, Roly, Premier and Vintage brands.
Rolando Reyes Sr. died in Miami of natural causes at age 89, on March 18, 2012. Many remember him as an old-school master of his craft, one who forged lasting friendships by generously helping fellow tobacconists seeking advice.
Cult cigars are newcomers to the tobacco industry. Quality Importers has teamed up with Carlos and Chris Sanchez's boutique cigar company, TACASA, on a new adventure. This every day, medium body blended smoke will appeal to everyone from beginners to the most experienced connoisseurs. The Sanchez's spend their day overseeing every aspect of creating this new line. They believe that quality is first and foremost over quantity. They also wanted to offer a smoke that began with a quality tobacco leaf selection and ended top-notch with a unique packaging theme. These Cult cigars fit that bill perfectly.
The slogan for this stick is simply, "Life's too short to smoke alone". These handmade cigars come from the vastly rich soils of Estelí, Nicaragua. Cult cigars are said to have that perfect flavor profile that will suit a smoker any time of the day, any day of the week. TACASA chose Quality Importers Trading Company to be the sole distributor for the Sanchez's new brand.
The new Classic line from Cult cigars is offered in four very popular lengths and ring sizes. The Robusto is 5" long and has a ring size of 50. The Toro is a little longer, having the same ring size as the Robusto, and is 6". The Toro Grande is 6" long, but a little fatter than the Toro having a ring size of 60. The longest of the four choices is the Torpedo. It is 6 1/4" long with a ring size of 52. They are typically sold in a nice looking box of 24. They range in pricing from around $160.00 up to $190.00. The wrapper on the Cult Classic is a Rosado, an Ecuadorian Habano. It is a rich, chocolaty, brown color that is naturally oily. The binder consists of Indonesian tobacco. The filler uses leaves from Jalapa, Nicaragua. The company has placed this smoke into the medium category for strength. Flavor is ranked as a good medium that leans slightly towards full. This one is so new to the market, there was little found in the way of reviews.
Cigar reviews seem to agree that they were nice looking with a very cool looking designed band. It is reported that there is a hay-like smell to the wrapper which gave the smoker a very earthy toned cold draw. The first of the lit draw sends out more of those earthy notes, likened to mushrooms. Reviewers liked the cinnamon note that was combined with a cedar in the first third of this stick. The draw was said to be a little stiff, but that did not affect the burn line. The ash sported a clean white coloring that held on for more than an inch before falling.
The smoke rolled on the palate nicely, providing a sweetness in the beginning of the second third and finishing with more of the fragrant, cedar note. Still continuing with a tight draw, the burn line stayed consistently straight with the ash holding until it was finally tapped off.
The final third introduced a peppery note with hints of herbs on the front of the palate. As the final third rolled around in the mouth, those spicy notes gave way to allow the earthy, herbal notes to come to the front. Down to the nub, the Cult cigars brought back that spice and pepper for a great finish.
Made with one hundred percent Nicaraguan tobacco, Curivari cigars offer a bold flavor and great tobacco taste that is unmatched. This company hand picks the leaves that eventually are used in their smokes. They are not concerned with making an offering that is extremely strong or complex. Instead, their focus is on making them a flavor filled tobacco product that features a wonderful aroma. They use the Cuban seed tobacco as well as the same techniques that are used in Cuba in an effort to produce a stick that rivals those that have been heralded as some of the best in the world.
This is a new tobacco production company. However, there is plenty of information and reviews about their products. Curivari cigars may be new on the scene and in the industry, but they bring with them old world tobacco cultivation and fermentation techniques.
There are several offerings from Curivari cigars. Their lines include the following:
• Seleccion Privada
• Gloria de Leon
• El Gran Rey
• Reserva Limitada
The Seleccion Privada features flavors such as vanilla and cream. The Gloria de Leon features a profile of flavors that include black cherry, hints of cedar, and creamy coffee notes. The El Gran Rey offers caramel, some spiciness, and a hint of honey.
The Reserva Limitada is available in three different profiles with the first being the Classica. It has flavor profiles consisting of a slight taste of leather, a hint of coffee, and is blended nicely with spice. Another profile found under the Reserva Limitada title is the Café. It is great when it is paired with coffee because of the similar flavor notes of coffee and cocoa. The last in this collection is the 1000 Series. It features a taste of earthy berries, coffee, and a delightful hint of pepper.
Each of the lines that Curivari cigars produce is available in various sizes.
*The Seleccion Privada is available in Robusto: 5 X 50, Royales: 5 X 54 and Diplomaticos: 6 1/4 X 54.
*The Reserva Limitada Classica sizes include Epicures: 4 1/2 X 52, Monarcas: 5 1/4 X 52 and Imperiales: 6 1/4 X 54.
*The Reserva Limitada Café sizes include Petit Café: 4 ½ x 42, Café 52: 5 x 52 and Café 60: 5½ x 58.
*The Reserva Limitada 1000 Series offers sizes including Reserva 2000: 5 x 50, Reserva 3000: 6 x 50 and Reserva 4000: 6 ¼ x 54.
*The El Gran Rey is available in Emperadores: 5 X 50, Belicosois: 5 3/8 X 52 and Prominentes: 6½ X 50.
*The Gloria de Leon is available in Fuerza: 4 ½ X 50, Dominante: 5 ¼ X 54 and Prominente: 6 ¾ X 54.
The entire line of Curivari cigars offers Cuban seed tobaccos of both Coriollo and Corojo, and their fillers, binders, and wrappers are all from Nicaragua.
The unique flavor profiles that are found in this line will ensure that the general public will be hearing more about this company in the future. The reviews all suggest that these are wonderful sticks that everyone should give a try.
Cusano Cigars are among the leading sellers of imported smokes. Originating from the Dominican Republic, this brand has high accreditations from both the Cigar Aficionado Insider and Smoke magazine.
While most brands credit much of their success to the full flavor taste of the tobacco used, Cusano cigars claims that the wrapping is what really sets this brand apart from its competitors. The exotic leaf used for the wrapper is a crossbreed of an Ecuadoran and Dominican seed. This seed is grown in an open area so the full nutrients the sunlight produced are absorbed. The result is a thick, somewhat leathery leaf that is bursting with natural flavors and oils. This process brings out the earthy, peppery, and soft sweetness of the full-flavored cigar, creating an amazing taste, according to those that have tried it.
Reviewers stated that this smoke was smooth and enjoyable from beginning to end. The flavor, though strong, was not overpowering, but was created with many subtle scents and tastes. The cigar packed a lot of oomph without knocking someone off of their chair. The flavors range from a woodsy tint at first, mellowing out into a warm taste of pepper, leather, and vanilla, the perfect combination for any aficionado.
Other reviewers spoke of the ever-changing aroma and flavor of the tobacco. The sweet pepper is intoxicating and packs a punch that is never harsh. This allows for a relaxing and euphoric feeling to settle from the top of a person’s head all the way down to the tips of their toes. The entire stick is said to look as good as it tastes. Many have said that this cigar will forever have a place in their humidor and will be recommended to any person searching for a new smoke to try. The flavor is described as unbelievable, and the wonderful spice of the aroma hits right at the lips.
Cusano cigars come in a variety of styles, but the most popular forms consist of the Connecticut style, Maduro style, and the Dominicano style. Each stick is unique in its own right and packs a different taste and aroma, so each aficionado can find a blend that suits them.
The Connecticut series is the famed variety of Cusano cigars. The wrapper and binder use a tobacco grown in Connecticut with an Oro Seco, San Vicente Olor, and Ligero Piloto filler. This species is of mild strength for a smooth and creamy smoke.
The Maduro series is a stronger, more consuming brand. The wrapper is also grown in Connecticut but instead is complimented with a Brazilian and Dominican filler. This variety hints at more of a sweetness than the other smokes.
The Dominicano series has only been around for four years, but most agree that the wait has been worth it. This is a medium strength smoke that is a blend of rich, spicy, and robust flavors.
Cusano cigars come in a variety of different lengths, styles, and quantities. They can be ordered online or bought in local stores. They are sold singularly or in packs ranging from five to twenty. This gives customers the freedom to enjoy just one smoke or buy enough to stock up their humidor for the future.
Make Cigars and Accessories Your Own with Our Laser Engraver!
Tobacco enthusiasts are often looking for ways to personalize their hobby and a laser engraver can make it possible. Serious Cigars is now using this technology to produce custom images on anything an aficionado uses with their hobby, including the cigars themselves. This device is safe to use and will not cause any damage, nor will it affect the taste of the tobacco. It can also produce an image of nearly any design, including names, logos or abstract imagery. With so many options, an aficionado can customize their smoking experience however they see fit.
What items can be customized with a laser engraver?
Humidors, lighters, ashtrays, cutters and wine bottles can all be etched with this technology, as most cigars can. The device uses just enough energy to score an image into the item, so a smoker doesn’t have to worry about damage to their cigars or accessories.
What images can be produced with a laser engraver?
The device produces a contrast image, so it doesn’t produce any color on its own. Instead, it lightens up the image's area, making the image pop off the background. This means any image can be produced with the device; though, lettering will be the easiest to see. Most aficionados choose to have their cigars customized with their name, making it easy for others to tell whose cigar it is or if an accessory is ever lost or stolen. Would-be thieves will be less likely to take something that has a person’s name emblazoned across it.
Another common image people choose is a company logo, slogan or name, or a combination of the three. During a company event, cigars or accessories customized with the company’s image can be an effective PR tactic, helping to make an impression on an important client. Customized cigars and accessories make the perfect gift for aficionados, so this can be an ideal way to earn favor with a client or loved one. They are also perfect for weddings, the birth of child, birthday parties, family events, reunions, fundraising events and bachelor parties.
Who can customize cigars and cigar accessories?
Serious Cigars has been a leading supplier of cigars and cigar accessories since 1997, with an extensive online shop and several brick and mortar locations in the Houston area. Serious Cigars has an enormous selection of cigars, most of them available for customization with this technology. The online shop and brick and mortars also have a variety of accessories, including lighters, cutters, humidors, ashtrays and other items. These can all be customized to the customer’s specifications quickly, so there is only a short wait before receiving the item.
Anyone who is interested in making a unique cigar or accessory can get help from the professionals at Serious Cigars. With their expert help, an aficionado can make their beloved hobby even more special.
NASCAR fans will instantly recognize the face on the Dale Jr. 88 cigars. Dale Earnhardt Jr., 10-time winner of Most Popular NASCAR Racer and two-time Nationwide Series victor, has partnered with Ted’s Cigars to launch this smooth smoke, which has been well-received among aficionados. This stick features a Connecticut Shade wrapper and is made to appeal to smokers of all experience levels. Unlike many celebrity-endorsed stogies in the past, this one grabs the checkered flag and doesn’t look back.
The Dale Jr. 88 cigars are hand-made in the Dominican Republic. They are made with filler tobaccos from Brazil, Nicaragua, and the Dominican. The binder is also from the Dominican, and the wrapper is from Ecuador. This stick is only available as a 6 x 50 Toro, which happens to be Earnhardt’s preferred size, and comes in boxes of 3, 10, or 25. Celebrity-endorsed products are often met with lukewarm reception by the smoker community. However, these sticks use a blend similar to Ted’s Made by Hand Connecticut Shade Tube, which earned high ratings in the 80s.
The stick is light brown in appearance, with moderate veining and no oily sheen. It is dry to the touch, smooth, and has some heft. Many reviewers picked up a strong grassy scent from the wrapper and detected a hearty tobacco aroma during the pre-light draw. The Dale Jr. 88 cigars come with a blue, red, and white tri-color band featuring the racer’s signature and iconic car number.
Reviewers noted that this hand-made cigar lights up quickly and handles a flame well. It has a sharp burn line that needs few touchups, and it deposits flaky, light grey ash. The draw is on the loose side. However, it doesn’t interfere with the quality of the burn or flavor, so most aficionados didn’t consider this a major issue.
In the first third of the Dale Jr. 88 cigars, many reviewers detected a combination of cream and floral notes. The floral flavor is the stronger of the two and maintains its dominance through the first third. Near the end of this part of the stick, some reviewers also tasted coffee and some sweetness. During the second third of the stogie, the floral layer gives way to a combination of nuttiness and earth. The floral and cream are secondary at this point, and over time, the cream disappears. There aren’t many flavor transitions, and the taste is never harsh at any point.
In the last third of the Dale Jr. 88 cigars, the sweetness is the dominant taste, though the floral and earth flavors are still present. Some reviewers also detected some spice, though it was mild and balanced against the other notes. Like many other Connecticut Shade stogies, this one finishes off sweet and smooth, and it burns at a manageable temperature down to the nub.
Most aficionados consider this stick to be mild-bodied. It is medium in strength, which makes it ideal for novices who want to get a lot of flavor without a lot of punch. While, some smokers assume that celebrity endorsed products are a gimmick, these sticks prove this assumption unfounded. They feature a strong flavor profile and solid construction that both handle well, defying the stereotype.
When you hear of Davidoff Cigars, the name “Davidoff”, itself automatically makes you think affluence and luxury. Zino Davidoff, the man behind the Davidoff Cigar brand, created a line of high- end men’s products such as ties, fragrances, glasses, cognac, briefcases, and humidors that complimented his affluent cigar smoking clientele. His success at building a multi-million dollar business in the 20th century on tobacco product is truly remarkable and therefore has made Davidoff cigars synonymous with quality in the industry.
DavidoffCigars has a rather complicated history that starts with the birth of its founder, Zino, in 1911 Russia, or present day Ukraine. His parents were either cigar merchants or cigar manufacturers in Kiev who fled to Switzerland in 1911 to avoid Russian anti-Semitism, and opened a modest cigar shop in Geneva. After finishing school, Zino traveled to Latin America to learn the tobacco trade where he worked for two years on a plantation. This is where Davidoff first developed a love for Cuban cigars.
Upon his return from Switzerland in 1940, Davidoff took over his parents’ cigar shop which grew into a lucrative business after World War II. Neutral Switzerland became a haven for wealthy tobacco customers at that time which afforded Zino to successfully market Hoyo de Monterrey Chateaux Series of Cuban cigars among others. During this time he also was responsible for creating the first desktop humidor that preserved the same conditions with which cigars were rolled in Havana, Cuba.
In 1970, Davidoff sold his tobacco shop to the Max Oettinger Group, but not before he started the Davidoff Cigar line three years prior. Zino was approached by Cubatabaco which was Cuba’s state tobacco monopoly at the time, to create his own personal brand for his stores. Davidoff launched his line one year before he sold his tobacco shop to pursue what is now the Davidoff empire.
There are two types of DavidoffCigars: Cuban Davidoffs, and Dominican Davidoffs.
The original line, Cuban Davidoffs, was produced in the El Laguito factory in Havana which was established to roll Fidel Castro’s personal cigars, Cohiba. Cuban Davidoffs were officially discontinued in 1991 after the relationship between Davidoff and Cubatabaco dissolved due to numerous disputes over quality and ownership of the brand. One would speculate that the event that led to their break-up was in 1989 when Davidoff publically burned over 100,000 of his cigars that he deemed unfit to sell due to poor quality.
Dominican Davidoffs were already in production a year before the cancellation of his Cuban line and are still available today. After moving his operation to the Dominican Republic, rather than trying to re-create the flavor profiles of his Cuban line, Davidoff set out to raise the bar for Dominican cigars. Dressed in claro Connecticut wrappers, these immaculately tailored cigars are blended by Hendrik Kelner who is unmatched in the Dominican Republic for his knowledge of tobacco and cigar making. Kelner’s company, Tabacos Dominicanos S.A., has produced some of the most sought-after handmade smokes to come out of the island.
Davidoff Cigar offerings available today include: Series Anniversario, Series Classic, Series Grand Cru, Series Mille, Series Special, Series Millennium Blend, Puro d’Oro, and Limited Editions.
DavidoffCigars are medium to mild and are known for their rich and wonderfully complex flavor.
Diamond Crown Cigars is the elite premium cigars line from the J.C. Newman Company that was founded in 1895. Carlos Fuente Sr. wanted to produce something that was more than a premium stock; so he collaborated with Stanford J. Newman to create this luxuriously wonderful offering. It was his dream to make a smoke that had not been made before this.
This was the first company to offer cigars with a 54 ring gauge. Prior to that, the largest ring size that was available was a 52. The aim was to create a very fat smoke that would be favored by aficionados all over the world. The reason for wanting a bigger ring was to be able to blend more tobaccos together in a cigar with lots of flavor and aroma producing smoke. This would make room for up to seven tobacco leaves and they knew that this would create an extraordinarily flavorful and complex blend of tobaccos. They began with tobaccos of different types from Dominican Republic, and the rest is history....
Another thing that sets Diamond Crown cigars apart from others are their Connecticut Fermented Wrappers. This comes about as a second step to the fermentation process is added that is not usually performed with other smokes. Nearly every maker uses wrappers that are put up in tobacco bales and then allowed to dry and bulk up before it is made into a stick. Diamond Crown cigars allows this process to go on for five full years and then, and only then, are the best leaves chosen. Not only does this give the wrapper a beautiful rose color but it also nearly assures that there will be no flaws in the wrapper itself.
This line was invented to commemorate the one hundredth anniversary of J.C. Newman. It truly was a production of love because they did not really mind if it took a long time and cost a lot of money, they just wanted to create something that was unlike anything the connoisseurs had seen beforehand.
Reviewers offered that this could possibly be the most beautiful and flawless wrapper they had ever seen and it was presented to them on Diamond Crown cigars. They went on to say that the flavors included a very creamy vanilla mixed with an almond nuttiness and spiciness. In the second third, most of the creaminess dissipates. The dominate taste now is the almond nuttiness. Later there are notes of wood and the creaminess gradually reappears. The last third has the almond nuttiness in the forefront but there is also a hint of licorice and a woodsy note.
When describing the smoke the reviewers all agreed that it had an excellent burn to it. It featured a medium type ash that held strong almost until the very nub. The draw and amount of smoke was excellent as well.
Diamond Crown cigars are heralded as being a step above the rest because they are so smooth. This no doubt is attributed to the fermentation process that takes these smokes to another level above and beyond any that rival them. If you can find some of these extraordinary beauties, you’ll certainly want some for your humidor—they also make great gifts for your cigar smoking buddies!
Cuban born Don Jose “Pepin” Garcia is a highly acclaimed cigar roller that came to America in 2001, and a year later set up his first cigar factory, El Ray de los Habanos, Inc., also known as Don Pepin Cigars. Don Pepin comes from a large family of tobacco growers and cigar makers in Báez, a little town in Villa Clara province in Cuba. As just a young boy, Don Pepin began working in his uncle’s cigar factory in Báez. Two years later he began working at the Félix Rodriquez import cigar factory, and was there from the age of 13. Don Pepin lived in Cuba for 51 years, and during that time he perfected his skills as cigar roller and blender, and has been considered to be the best cigar artisan in Cuba.
Just how talented is the man behind the Don Pepin cigar? Well if you aren’t impressed yet by the sheer number of years Don Pepin has been making cigars, let’s take a look at his resume, if you will.
Don Pepin’s PERSONAL AWARDS and RECOGNITION in CUBA
• Achieved Highest Ranking Possible for a Cigar Roller, Class 8, or “Master Roller” which can take a person 20 years to finally achieve
• Named Tobaquero Maestro or “Master Blender” and has received numerous accolades for his blending abilities, as well as, helped blend cigars like Cohiba, Partagas, and Montecristo
• Won the Productivity Prize for rolling 320 Julietas in 4 hours
• Named the “teacher of all teachers” in rolling and blending cigars
• 1990’s: In charge of Quality Control for Cohiba and Consultant to several cigar makers
Although Don Pepin was highly recognized in his own country, he was fairly unknown when he first immigrated to the United States. He left Cuba, spent some time in Nicaragua, then in 2002 he opened up what is now considered the hottest cigar factory in Miami, manufacturing not only Don Pepin cigars, but creating blends for other companies as well.
Pete Johnson’s Tatuaje brand was the first cigar Don Pepin made on his own. The huge success of Tatuaje launched Don Pepin into the admiring eyes of boutique cigar lovers, and from there, he has created many other award winning client blends as well. To keep up with his popularity and demand for more production, Don Pepin opened Tabacalera Cubana S.A. factory (TACUBA) in Estelí, Nicaragua in 2006. TACUBA is larger than the factory in Miami and employs 62 master rollers that turn out over 3.5 million cigars per year.
Don Pepin client brands include: 5 Star, Tatuaje, Inc., Ashton, Cigars International, Cigar.com, Inc., EO Brands (United Tobacco), Holt’s Cigar Company, Troya Cigars and also various limited production cigars as well.
All Don Pepin cigars are made in the classic Cuban tradition, with the goal to re-create the taste profile of Cuban cigars without using Cuban tobacco. He uses Nicaraguan tobaccos and occasionally uses Ecuadorian and Connecticut shade tobacco for some of his wrappers. They are all medium to full bodied and have been known to pack a punch. His cigars continue to receive top ratings, as well as being included in Cigar Afficiando’s “Top 25 Cigars of the Year”.
Drew Estate Cigars were created from the very beginning by Jonathan Drew with the idea to develop cigars that were completely different from the traditional stick. Thus, his company has generated a reputation among a new group of cigar enthusiasts, which honors him as the one responsible for the rebirth of the cigar. Those intrigued by Drew Estate Cigars will delight in learning about the distinctive tobaccos and exclusive infusions brought together in perfect harmony in each cigar. Because these new age cigars are loaded with personality, their following has grown exponentially, which has resulted in Jonathan Drew landing a top spot among Nicaraguan cigar makers.
One of the keys to the success of Drew Estate Cigars is that a variety of cigars are offered at a reasonable price per stick. This allows an opportunity for the cigar smoking consumer to sample the cigars and determine which smokes are best suited for his taste. In addition, the expansion from making cigars with just unique tobaccos and infusions to premium cigar making has attracted an even broader audience, reaching almost anyone with a love for cigars.
At first glance, these smokes are unusual in every aspect, which is only to be expected by such a revolutionary maker. Perhaps the most distinctive characteristic that sets Drew Estate Cigars apart from the others is that Drew uses a shaggy foot. A shaggy foot is exactly what it sounds like in that the Nicaraguan filler leaves protrude out longer than the actual wrapper. Although the look is not as regal, it makes for happy smokers because it allows the flavors and aroma of the binder and filler tobaccos to remain separate from those of the wrapper.
After setting fire, it becomes quite evident that these cigars are ACID cigars. ACID cigars are a mixture of vital oils and premium long leaf Nicaraguan fillers, which are strategically introduced to create a heavenly aroma that is not likely to be mimicked. In addition, Drew cleverly infuses his cigars with palate-pleasing flavors to add to the already superb performance. The Java infusion is perhaps the most sought after infusion, which blends the aromas of cocoa and espresso beans with some of the best Nicaraguan tobaccos to produce a delicate flavor.
Likewise, if the smoker appreciates the Java infusion, the Java Latte will most likely be pleasing as well. Although it is the exact same infusion process as the Java infusion, this cigar is wrapped in an Ecuadorian Connecticut leaf, which rewards the palate with a creamy feel. Just like adding a drop of cream straight into a cup of freshly brewed coffee, the soul will be revived upon completion.
All in all, Drew Estate Cigars are some of the most original and intriguing cigars available on the market today. Whether a novice or trained aficionado, anyone interested in cigars must try one of these unique sticks. With that in mind, the consumer should be prepared to buy a few because once one has been lit, the palate will be demanding more.
Our Cigar Shop is located in Houston Texas, however we also service all 50 states including New York NY, Los Angeles CA, Miami, FL. Chicago, IL. Denver CO., El Paso, Texas, Dallas TX DFW, San Antonio, TX, Austin, TX, Boise ID, Atlanta GA, Raleigh-Durham NC, WashingtonC, Albuquerque NM, Huntsville AL, Fayetteville AR, N Dorfolk VA , Madison WI.
Before determining the ideal brand and model, it is important to compare electronic cigarettes and their features, in addition to any personal preferences that may impact the selection.
Smokers should compare electronic cigarettes brands prior to purchasing the one that will meet their needs. While this device is not new, the trend of utilizing this alternative is increasing in popularity. There are numerous manufacturers of these smokes and yet they differ from model to model. When it comes time to compare electronic cigarettes, aspects such as should be considered.
Frequently referred to as e-cigs, the apparatus dates back to the early 1960s, but it wasn’t until 2000 when Chinese pharmacist Hon Lik modernized the idea. His model created a vapor similar to smoke that carries nicotine into the lungs when inhaled. When a consumer decides to compare electronic cigarettes, smokers will find that the key parts of the device are universal. The three main pieces include the mouthpiece cartridge for the liquid, an atomizer and the rechargeable battery.
Before determining the ideal brand and model, it is important to compare electronic cigarettes and their features, in addition to any personal preferences that may impact the selection. There are many companies that produce these, including Elektro, Fifty-One, Krave, Ploom, Square 82, and the well known Vapor Gen. Taking a closer look at each of these will provide an excellent starting point in the selection process.
• Elektro aims to produce high quality, tobacco-free devices at a competitive, yet affordable price. One review of the Elektro described it as stylish and versatile. They favored the consistent taste, ability to fill with a rubber dripper, and its conventional size and feel.
• The Fifty One E Cigarette has been described as original and ground-breaking. It is said to look similar to a conventional smoke, yet with a bit wider and longer body. Described as simple and reliable, the taste is comparable to the real deal. They offer numerous concentrations of nicotine and flavors such as coffee and methanol.
• Krave is a popular two part, disposable tool, with effortless assembly. It has a four-hole atomizer, is easy to use, and is said to be quite flavorful. The lack of automatic shut-off allowed for it to be enjoyed for longer periods of time.
• Ploom is an innovative company with a modernized approach of employing the vaporization plant materials. One review praised the incessant and smooth taste, ideal battery style, and add-on options such as the USB charging adaptor.
• The Square 82 electronic or e cigarette brand is favored for the long lifespan of their products. They endure over 500 puffs which is the same as two packs of their traditional counterpart. They are affordable and readily available both online and via widespread retailers. Reviewers agree this smoke offers clean and full-bodied vapor with an abundant flavor.
• The Generic E Cig produced solely for Serious is a two part apparatus that is said to perform well. Its operation and price are comparable to conventional smokes as well as other models.
• Vapor Gen is a top manufacturer of numerous models such as the previously mentioned Fifty-One and Krave as well as Smoke Star and Americig. Their personal smokes are rechargeable and are said to be an ideal means for smoking in any environment.
With so many options on the market it is imperative to compare electronic cigarettes and brands to determine their compatibility with the smoker. From the Generic to the ever popular Vapor Gen, this modern alternative provides a much better experience for smokers.
The Edgar Hoill cigar is one that will turn heads when it is smoked in public. It was released late last year by Christian Eiroa, who collaborated with the creator, Hoill, who is known for his photography as well. The thing that makes it stand out is its unique vitolas. They are definitely out there, and while many odd shaped vitolas have problems with the burn or draw, or just neglect flavor altogether, this is not the case with these sticks. They are some of the few novel creations in the industry that don’t suffer from being gimmicky.
It comes is three shapes and sizes – the Cultura, which comes in at 4 1/2 x 38/54 and tapers all the way from the foot to the cap, the Vida, which comes in at 4 1/2 x 38/52/52 and has a small ring gauge near the cap, and the Pasion, which comes in at 6 5/8 x 52/38 and looks a bit like a torpedo. The Edgar Hoill cigar line features Nicaraguan tobacco everywhere in the construction, from the wrapper, to the binder to the blend. They are packaged 10 in a box, and come wrapped in sturdy onion paper that does a fine job of protecting the stogie.
The construction is top notch, and features a medium brown wrapper that is slightly oily and toothy. There are several veins and seams visible, which gives it a very traditional look. There is an interesting play in the Edgar Hoill cigar between the contemporary vitolas and the traditional construction.
The first third of the stick starts off with some red pepper and oak. As is expected from an odd vitola, the flavors changed more often than normal, and reviewers found earth, sweet cedar and coffee in the mix soon enough. The oak and red pepper flavors were considered the dominant notes, with the coffee and earth layers playing second fiddle. Aficionados found that the sweet cedar was most noticeable during the retro-hale.
The second third of the Edgar Hoill cigar is nearly identical to the first third, with the oak and red pepper jockeying back and forth to take center stage. In the final third of the stogie, the sweet cedar disappears, and the red pepper is far and away the most dominant taste. The coffee and earth are still there as secondary flavors, and the oak joins them here. This combination of tastes holds true until the nub, which is said to be cool to the touch.
Many aficionados fear the uneven burn and draw in nontraditional vitolas, but the Edgar Hoill cigar does an excellent job of overcoming these common problems. The burn requires little or no maintenance at all, and the draw is nice and easy. The ash comes out looking like salt and pepper, but is very tight and holds on for a while. The strength and body both start out comfortably medium, but slowly move the needle as the smoke progresses. By the end of the stick, both the strength and body are leaning more toward full, and they complement each other well, both starting and ending near the same point as each other.
Ernesto Perez-Carrillo Jr. is well known in the business, and his father, Ernesto Sr., built the El Crédito. He began producing El Credito cigars in 1969, and then taught Ernesto Jr. everything he knew about tobacco and rolling which he had learned in Cuba. Together, they built a multi-million dollar business in Little Havana in Miami over the years to come.
The boom of the 1990s brought more business than the El Credito Cigars’ Miami factory could handle, so a new one in the Dominican Republic had to be built to keep the business going. Ernesto Jr. eventually sold the business to General in 1999.
With acquisitions and mergers taking place between the 1990s and present day, General is now the second largest producer in the world. They continue to produce El Credito cigars.
General boasts over 6000 employees in the Dominican Republic and Honduras. They have become very good corporate citizens in these countries. They have assisted with everything from education to growing and teaching the citizens how to grow fruit, produce, meat, and dairy, and how to improve their lives through an ongoing effort that General continues to fund.
General began as a wine merchant and tobacco merchant company when Ferdinand Cullman emigrated from Germany to the United States in 1848. It began as Cullman Brothers, and generations continued to work in the wine and tobacco business. Eventually over time, they began to manufacture smokes from the tobacco that they once had only sold to other companies for that purpose. By 1944, the business was in full swing, still only selling tobacco to cigar producers.
It was in 1960 that Cullman Brothers had the opportunity to purchase General, and they jumped on the chance. They went on as General to purchase Temple Hall, a factory in Jamaica which manufactures the brand, Macanudo. To this day, the Macanudo is still rolled by hand even though it is a top selling product in the United States.
Many people review them as being woodsy in flavor and robust. It produces a nice amount of smoke and also features notes of chocolate from the first draw all the way through to the final third and nub. Some other El Credito cigars also offer up flavors such as cola and even a hint of beef jerky. Basically, some of the El Credito cigars are described as having a lot of meat flavoring or smoked meat flavoring in their flavor profile.
When you try an El Credito smoke, it is obvious that there is a long lasting history of Cuban artisans at work in each and every draw. From the wonderful tobacco that is masterfully blended by skilled blenders to the extremely knowledgeable rollers who present you with a great bodied stick that has no soft spots, it is apparent that this is a quality tobacco product. These have a very colorful past that links them back to the very roots of the tobacco business and has generations of skill and perfection to offer in each and every draw.
The small, respected boutique company that produces El Primer Mundo cigars is one that rose from humble beginnings. Now, it is one of the fastest growing manufacturers out there, but has managed to hold onto its indie vibe.
Sean Williams, the founder and current head of El Primer Mundo cigars, was nothing more than an enthusiast when he decided to put the company together. Before he fell into the cigar business he had worked in pharmaceuticals, real estate, and home construction. He had to learn, first-hand, everything about the cultivation of tobacco, and the creation of the smokes themselves. The most difficult part of the process was figuring out just how many different strains of tobacco were out there, and how they tasted and felt when smoked. After a brief stay in Nicaragua to bring himself up to speed, he created the business in 2006, and the rest is history.
The company produces sticks in small batches, and embraces its status as a boutique smoke catering to those looking for a quality experience that does not taste mass produced. Currently, El Primer Mundo cigars have two lines of smokes. The first is the Select Line, and it consists of the Black Label, Blue Label, and Red Label products. The second is the Little Havana Series, and it is comprised of the Liga Miami and the Epifania smokes.
The Blue Label stick is the mildest of the five blends that the company offers, and is a three tobacco blend. It is a blend of Nicaraguan, Peruvian, and Honduran tobaccos. It is a mild smoke and the dominating flavor notes are a strong wood and cedar mixture combined with vanilla cream.
The Red Label by El Primer Mundo cigars is a medium to full bodied maduro smoke that also has a Nicaragua, Peruvian, and Honduran blend. It is one of the two blends Williams founded the company with, and it has withstood the test of connoisseurs very well so far. The strongest flavors are that of bitter coffee notes that are balanced well with the sweet chocolate notes, evidence of the maduro tobacco. The stick ramps up in complexity after the halfway point and features woody and spicy layers as well.
The Black Label is a mild to medium body stick with a Nicaraguan and Panamanian blend. This smoke is noted for its strong wood and leather flavors that give it an almost meaty taste. Like other El Primer Mundo cigars, this one increases in complexity near the end, and offers strong nutty and floral notes into the mix.
The Liga Miami stick is a medium bodied smoke with a Nicaraguan and Dominican Republic blend. This one may be the spiciest among all of the company’s offerings, and is for those who consider themselves experienced smokers. Strong spice and wood notes give way to slightly sweet caramel flavors near the end.
The Epifania is a full bodied stick, and is produced with avid smokers in mind. It, like the Liga Miami, has a Nicaraguan and Dominican Republic blend. It offers an exceedingly complex flavor with spice, cinnamon, coffee, wood, leather, nuts, and citrus all blending together to create a rich flavor profile.
Electronic cigarettes were invented by a Chinese company in 2004.They were intended to give people something to smoke in areas where cigarettes have been banned, and to be an aid in helping some people who decide to quit smoking cigarettes wean themselves off the nicotine.
As it always happens with anything new and exciting, American reporters caught wind of the electronic cigarette and began to find fault with them.They have recently produced a number of news exposes that claim e-cigarettes really do not help people quit, and that some types of e cigarette might even be hazardous to human health.
Journalists seem to always need to put something negative about something positive on the morning show, do they not?
We would like you to consider some facts before you get carried away with yet the latest media campaign against smokers and anything smoking related.It is much better to consider facts than to be manipulated by those whose agendas will move them to criticize even genius and inventiveness.
Fact Number One:If you decide that you want to quit smoking, the only thing that can really make you quit is YOU.A device like an e cigarette may help, but ultimately YOU have to make the choice.
Fact Number Two:Nothing that you take into your lungs besides non-polluted air is every 100 percent healthy for you to breathe.
Fact Number Three: An Electronic cigarette is intended to eliminate the annoyance that non-smokers tend to verbalize when they are exposed to second hand tobacco smoke.
Fact Number Four: As far as we know it, current research indicates that with or without a cigar or cigarette, physical life has a 100 percent mortality rate on this world.
Now that we have put the naysayers and critics in the proper place of being, we can now discuss something truly meritorious of our attention, and that is the revolutionary technology behind electric cigarettes.E-cigarettes look and taste just like real cigarettes.They contain nicotine, but they do not burn tobacco to release it and therefore do not produce tar that can accumulate in the lungs or stain clothing yellow.
An electronic cigarette uses a battery, an LED light, and a disposable cartridge that holds nicotine that is dissolved in a chemical called propylene glycol.Taking a puff from one of these cigarettes triggers a pressure sensor that vaporizes the nicotine chemical compound and releases it in vapor form when you inhale.
These nicotine vary in strength, with the strongest model possessing the same amount of nicotine as a full-strength cigarette.They last much longer, however.Your typical cigarette will last only for about 15 puffs, whereas an electronic cigarette will last for up to 300 puffs.The intention here is for people to transition over to e-cigarettes and stop using burn cigarettes.Over time, this can help them phase down to a lower intensity of nicotine, and, if they want to quit, choose a cartridge that contains only a flavor of some type and possesses no nicotine at all.
By supporting an alternative to cigarette addiction, we are by no means joining forces with anti-smoking lobby.We are here to provide good options, not operate as social do-gooders.Cigarette smoking has now been banned in all sorts of places (including bars if you can believe that) in cities such as Los Angeles, Austin, and Houston.Electronic cigarettes, because they do not produce smoke will not provoke others around you. While the vapor they produce is visible to the naked eye, it is not technically classified as smoke therefore cannot be regulated by anti-smoking bans.
Our featured product line is the Fifty-one electronic cigarette kit.It comes with a rechargeable battery and a disposable cartridge.It also comes with a nicotine pad and atomizing mechanism.After you have used up the disposable cartridge, you can simply replace it.You never need to replace the atomizer, nor will you experience nicotine build-up, clogging, or tar residue.
Emilio Cigars is a young company, founded in 2010, though its owner has been in the industry for decades. Gary Griffith is the creator of the brand and spent many years as a manager for a number of tobacco shops in Delaware. In 2010, he was invited to Central America for a blending trip and met AJ Fernandez, a talented blender. Griffith blended the AF1 and AF2 out of respect for Fernandez and sold them to a number of tobacco shops. The decision to depart his position and start his own company was unavoidable once the AF1, AF2 and Grimalkin, another Griffith blend, received a lot of attention. Over the next few years, Griffith’s company repeatedly set the bar with its unique and excellent blends.
The brand currently manufactures seven lines of stogies, though it distributes several more.Emilio Cigars has distribution deals with the 1502, Ezra Zion, Epicurean, Rodrigo, Herederos de Robaina, Guayacan and Nomad brands. Griffith and his people have mastered U.S. distribution, so many smaller boutiques look to them for additional visibility and retail presence.
The seven lines that Emilio Cigars currently produces include the AF1, AF2, AF Suave, Serie H Maduro, Serie H Sumatra, Draig K and La Musa (formerly Grimalkin).
The AF1 has a San Andreas maduro wrapper and Nicaraguan fillers and binders. It comes in four vitolas, including Robusto (5 x 50), Toro (6 x 50), Torpedo (6 x 52) and BMJ (6 x 58). The AF1 is said to be a complex smoke that combines caramel sweetness with coffee, black pepper and wood notes. Many aficionados raved about how well the stogie ages, making it the perfect long-term addition to the humidor.
The AF2 is wrapped in an Ecuadorian Habano Oscuro and comes with Nicaraguan fillers and binders. It is available in the same vitolas as the AF1, though it is very different in flavor. This stick is reported to use pepper, cedar, spice, sugar cane, coffee and cream flavors to great effect. It is medium to full-bodied.
The AF Suave is the third collaboration with Fernandez and features an Ecuadorian Connecticut Shade wrapper with Honduran and Nicaraguan binders and fillers. Most Emilio Cigars are medium to full in strength, but this one is said to be pleasantly mild. It has a flavor profile consisting of spice, vanilla, cream and dried fruit.
The Serie H Maduro is a Jamastran Ligero maduro with Nicaraguan and Costa Rican fillers. This is a full-bodied stogie with dark coffee, earth, leather, black pepper, cocoa and cinnamon notes. The Serie H Sumatra comes with a Sumatran wrapper and Jamastran and Costa Rican tobaccos. It features bold tobacco flavors with some earth and sweetness noted.
The final two Emilio Cigars are the Draig K and La Musa. The Draig K is dedicated to a friend of Griffith’s that passed shortly before the initial production run. It is a Colombian Cubanito maduro with Nicaraguan and Honduran fillers. Reviewers taste dark chocolate, leather, spice and herbs in the profile.
The La Musa is a rebranding of the popular Grimalkin. It’s an award-winning blend that contains black pepper, orange, raisin, cedar, spice and cinnamon in the profile. It is a medium-bodied smoke that is rolled in Esteli, Nicaragua.
Entubar Cigars are one of a kind. Not only from their appearance, but in the way the cigar is actually rolled. The name Entubar is actually a tribute to the way Cubans used to make their cigars. Rather than the traditional method called booking, which is when the filler is folded, Entubar Cigars are made by rolling the filler. In the rolling of these cigars, the ligero, the filler, is bunched by itself and then added to the rest of the bunch. The ligero extends the entire length of the cigar with an additional extension of ¼ inch out from the foot. The technique gives it a fuse like appearance. This is done so that it creates more of a draw and burn by allowing more air to flow from the foot to the head of the cigar.
The Entubar Cigars were introduced by Berger and Argenti Cigars. The company began in 2009 and these were the first cigars they released. Berger and Argenti Cigars is owned by brothers, Albert and Michael Argenti and Enrique Berger. Mr. Berger comes from a long line of tobacconists and is known for his premium cigars. Micheal and Albert have an extensive knowledge of cigars with an irrefutable reputation in the cigar world. They have chosen to have their headquarters based out of Miami, but have kept their agricultural and production facilities in Esteli, Nicaragua. They only allow B&M's to exclusively sell their lines. They also only produce in small quantities to ensure that the highest quality and standards are used. They are known for specializing in small batch premium cigars for these reasons.
To learn more about the Entubar Cigars would be to take a look at two of the cigars in this line. One is the Entubar Original and the other newly released Entubar Quad Maduro. They are offered in the following sizes Corona Macho 4 5/8 inch x 48 ring gauge, Double Corona 7 5/8 x 54, Robusto 5 3/8 x 54 and Torpedo 6 7/8 x 56. The Entubar Original is also available in Gran Toro 6 5/8 x 64. You can buy either of these in boxes of twenty.
The Entubar Original has an Ecuadorian Connecticut wrapper that is a darker cocoa brown color. The filler is from Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic. It is considered a medium to full body cigar. The draw is flawless and the ash holds tight. The ash is medium gray in color and produces a lot of smoke. The overall flavor of this cigar is complex, but it transitions smoothly throughout the entire smoke. It has an earthy tobacco flavor with hints of spice. There are nutty and herbal notes in the background that come and go.
The Entubar Quad Maduro has a box pressed Habano wrapper. It is made of Nicaraguan Cuban-Seed Sun-Grown Maduro leaves. The tobacco leaves were aged in oak barrels for about eight years before they were used. The filler is Nicaraguan and Dominican Republic. This cigar is considered a full body smoke. The draw is perfect and the ash holds together nicely. It is white in color and produces a fair amount of creamy smoke. The flavor is of an earthy tobacco, as with the Entubar Original, with hints of nuts and a sweetness that is hard to pin down to a particular taste. There is no spice that is apparent in this cigar.
The Entubar Cigars are sure to please even the most finicky cigar aficionado. They are complex cigars that keep one guessing, yet it makes it enjoyable. Since these are always made in limited production, they are well worth the price, if you get the chance to get your hands on one.
EP Carrillo Cigars are the first cigars that the Perez-Carrillo family released when they started thieir cigar company. They are a family that has long been in the cigar industry, and were known throughout the world. The brand, however, had a long journey before it came to fruition and became what we now know as EP Carrillo Cigars.
The legacy began with Ernesto Perez-Carillo Sr. who was born in Cuba in 1904. He learned about the tobacco and cigar industry from his father and brother. They would hand roll penny cigars and sell them on the streets of Havana. Ernesto Sr. kept with the tobacco heritage and worked for years as a tobacco buyer. In 1948, he decided to venture on his own. He purchased what we now know as a family cigar dynasty, a small cigar factory called El Credito. Through the years, the Perez-Carrillo family grew to be very well-respected in Cuba. Ernesto Sr. ran and was elected twice to the Cuban Senate in 1954 and 1958. However, when Fidel Castro gained power in Cuba, it changed their lives forever. Soon after Castro gained control, Ernesto Sr. was arrested several times for his political beliefs and the government took the family's property, including their tobacco factory. After the multiple arrests and seizure of properties, the family feared for their safety and fled to the shores of Miami in 1959. About nine years after the family reached the safety of the U.S. shores, Ernesto Sr. purchased another cigar factory in Little Havana and in tribute, named it El Credito, as well. He worked at his passion until he passed in 1980. At that time, Ernesto Jr. took the reigns of El Credito, ready to continue his father;s legacy. In doing so, he set out to create a cigar that would entice the palate. With that, he created La Gloria Cubana, a perfectly blended cigar. The cigar was an instant success in Miami, and soon after became one of the most sought after cigars in the world. The demand deemed to be too much for this family run business, and in 1999 Swedish Match purchased El Credito. Ernesto Jr. continued on at Swedish Match/General Cigar until March 2009. At that point, his children, Ernesto III and Lissette, pleaded with him to return to the tobacco fields he knew so much about and create the worlds next great cigar, and he did. In late 2009, he started EP Carrillo Cigars.
The Edicion Inaugural 2009 was the first release of EP Carrillo Cigars. The wrapper is made from 3 year old Ecuadorian Habano. It is a light brown color, with minimal veins, and visually flawless. The cigar itself feels firm and it has some weight to it. The filler and binder are both made from 5 year old Nicaraguan and Dominican tobacco. The pre-light draw smells of sweet grass, with hints of cinnamon. Upon the light of the cigar, and the initial draw, the taste is very complex. The tastes here include the cinnamon and sweet grass as noted in the pre-light draw, as well as honey, and a white pepper spice. During the second-third, the beginning flavors remained, but an added note of graham cracker and vanilla start to come through. The white pepper seems to fade at this point. In the final third, the pepper is back, bringing all the previously mentioned flavors right along with it. This cigar finishes with a nice creamy caramel, and rich, buttery flavor. The ash is white, and holds firm and stable throughout the burn. It produces large clouds of creamy smoke. The burn is even and slow.
EP Carrillo Cigars only released 150,000 EP Carrillo Edicion Inaugural 2009 cigars due to the rare ingredients they used. They are so rare in fact, that there is not enough for regular production. They come in only one size, 5 5/8 inch x 52 ring gauge, and are sold in boxes of ten. The overall complexity of this cigar makes it a joy to smoke, and well worth the price. The flavors are perfectly married, so one does not overpower the other. EP Carrillo Cigars have proven themselves to be marvels in the cigar industry. So if you get the opportunity you might want to add one of these beauties to your collection sitting in the humidor.
Espinosa cigars have been around since 2004. All of them were created by Erik Espinosa and Eddie Ortega, his former partner. After producing several quality lines over the next eight years, Erik purchased an inn in Esteli, Nicaragua, and converted it into a factory that would produce his own blends. This factory, La Zona, is located in one of the biggest tobacco growing hotspots in the world, making it the ideal location for Erik to test out his new stogies. Erik was born in Cuba, raised in Miami and has been in the industry in some capacity since 1997, so he infuses decades of expertise into each stick.
The La Zona blend is among the first of the Espinosa cigars to have been created and produced at his new factory. It is value priced and is meant to introduce smokers to the factory. The wrapper is produced with either La Zona Habano leaf or La Zona Connecticut leaf, and is available in two sizes – Robusto (5 x 52) and Super Toro (6 1/2 x 54). The stick is medium bodied, which likely makes it the most novice friendly stogie that Erik puts out, and features Nicaraguan filler and binder.
The Murcielago, which is Spanish for “bat,” is a medium-full bodied stick that is made with a dark Mexican maduro wrapper and is described as being sweet with just a little spice. The filler is Nicaraguan, and the binder is also Mexican, making it unique among Espinosa cigars. It comes in fives sizes, including Robusto (5 x 50), Toro (6 1/8 x 50), Churchill (7 x 48), Belicoso (5 1/2 x 52) and Toro Grande (6 1/2 x 54).
La Bomba is an experiment in strength, as it is one of the most full bodied sticks available anywhere. While most of the blends from this company are better suited for experienced smokers, this one ratchets this sentiment up as high as it will go. It is all Nicaraguan, from the Habano leaf to the longfiller, and is targeted at smokers who enjoy Ligero. It is available in four vitolas, aptly named Atom (5 1/2 x 46), Napalm (5 x 52), Nuclear (6 x 50) and Atomic (6 x 60).
The remaining three lines of Espinosa cigars are the Blue Label, the Red Label and the Green Label. The Blue Label is wrapped with a maduro leaf and is a medium-full bodied stick. It features sweet and dark tobacco flavors and contains aged fillers. Among all of Erik’s products, the Blue Label may be the most acclaimed, earning a 93 from Cigar Aficionado and ranking in top lists in multiple publications.
The Red Label comes with a Habano wrapper from Nicaragua, and is a full bodied stick aimed at experienced smokers, like most other Espinosa cigars. The flavors are considered well balanced by many reviewers.
The Green Label is wrapped with a Habano Oscuro leaf, and is also full bodied. The flavors in the Green Label are also well balanced, and everything from the wrapper to the filler and binder are sourced from Nicaragua. This stick is also known for the high volume of aromatic smoke it puts out.
Esteban Carreras cigars are made from the best of the best by the best. This means that Craig Cunningham, who owns and operates the company, knows great tobacco and knows how to manufacture a perfect smoke. With operations in Esteli, Nicaragua as well as Santiago, Dominican Republic, the finest types of tobaccos are grown, nurtured, and then rolled into the offerings that the world has come to know and love as Esteban Carreras cigars.
There are two brands that are manufactured exclusively in Estelí, Nicaragua, and they are the 10 Anos and Habano brands.
Other offerings by this company include:
• Cubana Real Semilla
• Dias Anos
Perhaps one of the reasons that Esteban Carreras cigars are so wonderful lies within the fact that they are created and blended by a master blender. Master blenders have the experience that only many years of blending cigar tobaccos to perfection can bring.
Esteban Carreras cigars have a lot of history besides the fact that the blender has strong Cuban roots that date back generations. For instance, the 5150 line was named after a California code concerning the involuntary psychiatric hold on a person who is deemed of being in danger of harming themselves or others. This is just part of the fun facts that sets the Esteban Carreras cigars and their makers apart from the rest of the pack.
These exquisite offerings often feature very surprising aromas, tastes, and other types of awe inspiring things that are sometimes not expected but greatly appreciated by connoisseurs everywhere. For example, the 5150 features very unfamiliar tastes that are normally associated with smokes, such as maple syrup. Along with the unexpected, comes the often found such as woodsy notes like oak and earthy notes like hay. One may even experience a tiny taste of chocolate here and there throughout the 5150. There are even notes of coffee that can be found in places and toward the end of this stick.
When combining the know-how three generations can provide along with the experience and tradition being steeped in Cuban origin, the results are phenomenal. This is part of the success that this company has enjoyed throughout the years.
When the names are as complex as the blends themselves, the smokes tend to create a mystique that begs to be investigated by the most curious of aficionados everywhere. It is no surprise that these sticks are found in the humidors of avid connoisseurs all over the world.
Ezra Zion Cigars is a young company, created by the people who run Cigar Federation, a social networking site for tobacco enthusiasts. In the 18 months since its founding, the company has already produced five releases, all of which have been well liked by reviewers and enthusiasts. The brand likes to build stories around each of its releases, most of which are pulled from the owners’ personal histories. The name of the brand itself is taken from the founders’ pasts. Both names are taken from children that two of the founders lost, so they live on in their parents’ efforts.
The company handles most of its production out of Nicaragua and doesn’t rely on gimmicky marketing or branding to stand out from the crowd. Its four releases include the Jamais Vu (originally called the Inception), FHK, Tantrum and Eminence.
The Jamais Vu comes with a 2007 Corojo wrapper and binder, a 2006 Criollo binder and Medio Tiempos, Visos and Ligeros from a 2007 Cuban tobacco. This smoke produces a strong collection of wood, floral and earth notes, with a slight sweet and spicy balance that ties everything together. The Jamais Vu remains one of the most popular Ezra Zion cigars and is medium bodied and medium in strength. The Jamais Vu are available in five vitolas, including Gran Robusto (5 1/4 x 50), Corona (46 x 6), Seis Cero Seis (6 x 60), Exquisito (6 1/4 x 52) and Corona Gorda (6 1/2 x 54).
The FHK stands for “fathers of Hoovers and Kelly,” which references the rich heritage of the founders’ families. It comes with a San Andreas Maduro wrapper, an Indonesian binder and fillers from Nicaragua and Brazil. Its flavors consist of cream, leather, oak, earth, cocoa and some espresso. It is sold in four formats, including Inspired (5 1/2 x 50), Character (6 x 52), Truth (7 x 44) and Stature (7 x 54).
The Tantrum was inspired by the owners’ experience with raising children. Like a newborn child, the Tantrum is small and is only available in a 4 2/5 x 44 vitola. It is also apt to surprise people with its loud flavors. This smoke evokes sweet cocoa and cedar flavors along with some pepper and nutty notes. Some saltiness also enters the profile eventually, balancing off the powerful sweet taste.
The Eminence comes with a Mexican San Andreas wrapper, Nicaraguan binders and aged Nicaraguan fillers. This stick is the fullest of the brand’s releases and has an extremely rustic appearance. It has a lot of tooth, visible veins and seams, making the stick appear almost like a patchwork. However, the flavors are excellent, with a strong earth core, leather, nuts, chalk and caramel all in the profile. Reviewers described the smoke as heavy and thick, so it is definitely for someone with a little experience. It is available in six vitolas, including Belicoso Gran Toro (5 x 58), Gran Robusto (5 1/4 x 50), Corona (6 x 46), Exquisito (6 1/4 x 52), Churchill (7 x 48) and Belicoso (7 x 54).
With four successful releases already in the portfolio, Ezra Zion Cigars is a young company to look out for in the future.
The Fernando Leon is a special cigar from the La Aurora company in the Dominican Republican. It was named after the company’s former owner, Don Fernando, who passed away in 2009.
La Aurora has been in business for about 100 years, making it the oldest cigar company in the country. Established as a local business in 1913 by Eduardo Leon Jimenes, it first distributed its cigar brand to other countries in 1945. It continued to grow over the years, although the Leon family remained in charge. In the 1960s, the brand came to the United States, shipping through the Miami Cigar and Company. It now manufactures 8 - 10 million La Aurora cigars a year.
The high quality cigars have always been popular with its customers, but the Fernando Leon is a special brand that was originally made for its namesake. Don Fernando (Eduardo Leon’s successor) shared the cigar with his family and intimate friends. The only time he ever showed it outside of his private circle was in 1997, when he came to Manhattan for an event at the Cigar Inn. After his death, his son Guillermo Leon decided that it was time for the cigar to be released to the entire public. It debuted in October 2012 at the same Cigar Inn that Don Fernando brought it.
The cigar is made with a Corojo wrapper and a red and gold band. While it consists of Dominican tobacco, it also contains a mixture of Peruvian and Brazilian tobacco. It comes in five sizes: Corona (5 ½ x 42), Corona Gorda (6 x 47), Belicoso (6 ¼ x 52), Gran Toro (6 x 58), and Robusto (5 x 50). The cigar was well received by customers, praising for its many flavors of cedar, coffee, cocoa, citrus, and raisin. One customer review said that it felt like an “old school” cigar; even though its initial spiciness weakened towards the end of the smoke, the other flavors remained intact.
The Fernando Leon cigar is a fitting tribute to the late head of La Aurora. Customers will embrace it as another fine product by the prestigious company.
Fonseca Cigars was established in 1892 by Don Fransisco E. Fonseca. He started his first factory in Havana at that time, and later, registered the cigar brand in his name in 1907. His wife, Donna Teresa Boetticher, continued the business even after the death of her husband in 1930. She merged brands with T. Castaneda and G. Montero to create the Castaneda, Montero, Fonseca SA firm. The Fonseca Cigarsare still produced in the Lazaro Pena factory in Havana and continue to be wrapped in fine Japanese tissue paper. In the beginning, the cigars were packaged in tin tubes, but now, they are packaged in aluminum tubes. The boxes that the cigars are packaged in still have Mr Fonseca's picture on it today.
These cigars are considered to be on the milder side for a Cuban cigar. They are also less expensive than some of their Cuban counterparts. Their popularity remains throughout Spain and Canada, which is where most of their marketing is done.
There isn't much in the way of history of the brand, but clearly, since it has been around for over one hundred years, there is something truly unique. Fonseca Cigars is the only brand to wrap Habano cigars in the Japanese tissue paper. They are also only available in limited distribution. This is to guarantee only the finest products are used, and the highest quality standards are in place. This ensures that the Fonseca name remains synonymous for perfection of the cigar and the ultimate in cigar smoking.
To get a greater view of the brand would be to step into your local B&M. Lets take a look at a few of the Fonseca Cigars that are on the market. One is the KDT Cadete, the smallest of this Cuban brand. It is wrapped in rice paper and has a ring gauge of 36. The draw is even, as is the burn. The ash holds together nicely and it produces large plumes of white smoke. The flavors are of earthy notes and roasted nuts. There are hints of pepper in the background. The taste is consistent throughout. It is also less complex than others in its category. It is a perfect smoke for any time of day. It is also great for a new cigar aficionado, or for someone wanting a brake from richer cigars. It has also been touted as being the best Havana cigar for the price.
The next one to preview is the Fonseca Habana Selection. It was released in 2006 and is a commemorative cigar with very limited distribution. It has a Cuban Criollo '98 wrapper and a Cuban-seed binder that are both grown in Nicaragua. The filler chosen for this cigar was aged for at least five years. The cigar feels firm with no soft spots. The visual construction is solid, which in turn, is confirmed by the feel. The burn is razor straight and needed no re-lights. The ash holds tight, and is white in color. This cigar also produces large amounts of white colored smoke. The flavor is smooth and consistent. It is a medium to full body smoke that is spicy and peppery.
The Fonseca brand may have merged with other names years ago, but one thing remains true, the perfection of the cigar. For a Cuban brand cigar, these are milder than most, which make it a cigar you can truly enjoy at any time. The time that is spent in mixing and mastering the cigars is proof alone that the legacy will continue on for a hundred or more years to come.
The creator of the Forty Creek Barrel Select Whiskey definitely has a knack for variation and began the world's very first Canadian whiskey infused cigar, the Forty Creek Cigar. This company is the only independently distilled Canadian whiskey in the entire world and was created by Ted's Made by Hand. The uniqueness of the whiskey is from harmoniously blending honey, vanilla and apricot, then infusing it with a special blend of toasty oak and black walnut, giving it a spiciness that is out of this world! It is rich and bold, yet very smooth, just like its counterpart, the Forty Creek Cigar. This stogie has become a hit with aficionados everywhere.
Most people believe cigars and whiskey are a marriage of smoke and flavor that is meant to be together. These beautiful sticks are cuddled in a buttery Cameroon wrapper, held together with a USA binder, and filled with bold and flavorful Dominican tobacco. The notes of this particular tobacco are pepper, butter, and cedar that are fused together with the character of the whiskey. Normally, infused sticks do not make the cut – so to speak. However, Forty Creek cigars are blazing the trail to a perfect balance of high quality tobacco and flavors.
From the pre-light draw through the first third of this stick, the palate delights in both the aroma and the bursts of unique flavoring. You will notice the peppery notes first, then slowly comes the smooth and creamy butter hue, charging past that is the cedar that mixes into a unique flavor that has taken the industry by storm. The second third of the stick brings out the whiskey zing of nuts, imparted fruit, and notes of spice. The smoke is dense, but mild and strong at the same time. The finish of the stick is not at all bitter or harsh. It will keep the smooth butter underlying note while the other flavors of the whiskey’s character titillate and dance around on your palate. The burn is perfectly even, holding a nice and firm ash. You absolutely cannot tell that these sticks are infused. Regardless of whether you are a novice smoker or have enjoyed many a stick in your time, these attributes alone generate the attractiveness towards them.
Although the Forty Creek Cigars are marked “mild”, full bodied smokers are in love with this particular cigar because of the quaintness and finesse it embodies. These make a great “first” for novices, and a favorite among the experienced aficionados that know a grand stogie when they taste one. You will not want to put this stick down in your ashtray, not even for a moment, because you will want to keep experiencing the ultimate joy of the excursion you are on while smoking it. Don’t forget about gift giving for whatever occasion may arise. The Forty Creek Cigars make a perfect gift idea for that business acquaintance or friend that you just do not know what to buy. Give the gift of a journey that they will never forget.
The pet project of Michael Giannini, Foundry cigars, are under the General Cigar Company umbrella and are a boutique collection of premium stogies. The theme of the brand’s sticks is steampunk, a popular fantasy and sci-fi genre blend. In the spirit of the theme, Giannini’s blends are named after important inventors, scientists or authors. Currently, the company has split its offerings into three lines, including the Original, the War of Currents, and the Element series. The blend details have been purposely withheld for the most part, with little information about the wrapper, binder or fillers available for any of Giannini’s products.
The Original line consists of four blends, including the Talbot (5 x 60), the Wells (6 x 50), the Lovelace (6 1/2 x 54) and the Caylay (6 1/2 x 60). Each of the blends is named after an influential steampunk author and fitted with a unique band. Another steampunk symbol, a gear, adorns each stick and emphasizes the strong theme of the brand even more. Reviewers found that the gear was easy to remove and did not cause any damage to the stick itself. The Original stogies hover around medium in strength and are also around medium in body. They produce a number of flavors according to reviewers, including oak, leather, earth and espresso.
The War of Currents Foundry cigars are thematically tied to the battle between Nikola Tesla and Thomas Edison for electrical supremacy. Each of the six stogies in the line is named after an important location tied to Edison or Tesla, like the site of their laboratories or areas where they had a lot of scientific influence. The vitolas in the War of Currents line include Menlo (5 x 60), West Orange (5 1/2 x50), Shoreham (5 1/2 x 54), Auburn (6 x 50), Madison (6 x 54) and Belgrade (6 x 60). These stogies have a more traditional look and do away with the gear found on the Original. Reviewers detected caramel, nutty, tobacco, cream and pepper flavors in the profile.
The latest addition to the Foundry cigars brand is the Elements line. This line is Giannini’s most ambitious to date, with 18 different blends making up the line. Of the 18 blends, only two will remain once their original release numbers are exhausted – the Carbon and Uranium. The blends are named after chemical elements or compounds, including helium, hydrogen, vanadium, plutonium, gold, argon, and H20 (water). The packaging for each blend received a lot of attention, and there are some unique designs in the bunch. For instance, the plutonium box is shaped like a bundle of dynamite, and the vanadium box is shaped like a giant letter ‘V.’ There is a great deal of variety in blend details among the Elements, but reviewers detected pepper, oak, cedar and tea most often among the blends.
While its packaging and appearance is likely to generate some lively discussion, it’s also likely that aficionados will all find something to like in this unique set of blends.
Fragrance lamps provide us with aroma and perfume, the harbingers of calmness and relaxation. A captivating scent can induce relaxation in the most stressful situations, romance where there seems to be not a hint, and tranquility in the midst of turmoil. Oil fragrance lamps open up a new world of olfactory sensations and have become an integral part of interior design in this present day.
Effusion fragrance lamps are a much better option than candles or incense because they do not work with an open flame (for longer than 2-3 minutes) and they do not exude smoke. They work on catalytic burner technology that was developed in the late 1800's to purify the air of airborne bacteria. Heated by flame until a determined heat level is reached, after which the flame is snuffed out and the burner continues with heat regeneration. The distinctive vessel that contains the scented oil is set upon the burner so that it heats the oil and the continuous bouquet flows throughout your home or office. The awesome bonus is that it is an air purifier system as well—how wonderful is that?
It is important to note that the fragrance lamp provides not only calming and spiritual overtones, but also plays an important role in aromatherapy or the therapeutic use of perfumes and scents to enhance one’s quality of life. The simple task of freshening the air has been extended with the introduction of lovely and sensual oils which provide long hours of aromatherapy.
There are no worries about leaving them unattended in the home or office because there is no flame to be concerned about. No matter how long they are left, there is no waxy burned smell such as snuffed candles leave behind. All that is emitted is a lovely and titillating scent of relaxation and warmth. There are so many beautifully decorative fragrance jars available that will blend and fit with any décor which are lovely to the eye as the scent is pleasing to the senses.
The awesome bonus is that these effusion lamps are an air purifier system as well. They will even cut through and extinguish any of the strong odors caused by pets, cigar smoking, or cooking that sometimes take control of the air in the home. How wonderful is that?
The oils that are beginning to fill homes and offices today with aroma that seems to never end by this simple method can be a memorable and prestigious gift for fragrance adorers. These effusion lamps often come in containers that are a work of art in themselves and the esthetic quality is what makes them luxury fragrance lamps for both the visual and olfactory senses. Also considered to be safer and more children friendly than incense or candles, the absence of smoke is a true plus in itself. Fragrance lamps provide hours upon hours of never ending scents tiptoeing throughout the home or office.
You will want to purchase one for every room of your home and office. The great thing about it is you can locate the perfect fragrance lamp online through your favorite cigar shop, in beautiful and decorative styles. Give one as a personal gift of love and friendship, you can even throw a cigar gift basket together with being the most important items for the non-smokers in the home or office!
The sheer brilliance of Arturo Fuente and Prometheus partnered together to create God of Fire cigars in 2004. They are made of the highest quality and are hand rolled in the Dominican Republic. Produced by Fuente and then offered in highly fashionable packaging boxes created by Prometheus, this line is impressive both on presentation, and upon smoking it.
Arturo Fuente is known for making the finest line of premium cigars. Prometheus is an accessory manufacturer who has an impeccable status that ensures quality in everything they make.
God of Fire cigars offer a full-bodied flavor by combining Dominican filler and binder leaves. This wonderful blend was devised by Carlos Fuente and Carlitos, his son.
After the proper leaves were determined by the Fuente’s, they were allowed to age until they became cured. Then they had to undergo the fermentation process for years until they were able to be allowed to represent the brand. They had to be superior enough to be placed under the Fuente name.
Ecuadorian wrappers were the chosen wrappers for the elder Fuente’s blend, while the younger Fuente decided upon a Cameroon wrapper for his blend. These blends represented their own individual tastes, and this could be why they are such amazing offerings. If the master deems this his personal best and his favorite, then you know the end result has to be a mind blowing experience. Whichever wrapper introduces you to the God of Fire cigar line, you will find yourself immersed in a wonderful smoke. You will experience the smoothness, the leather and nut notes, and the sweet spiciness that presents itself at the finish of these very flavorful sticks. These heavenly offerings are available to those of you whom are mere earthlings, but they are released in limited quantities as can be said of most things of such a wonderful quality. These are definitely going to be hard to find, but fear not, it is not impossible. God of Fire cigars are one of those must-haves for any humidor in order to complete a collection of offerings that are as distinctive as they are wonderful.
Of course, getting your hands on these delectable treats for the palate isn’t the only thing that might be difficult for the connoisseur. As an aficionado, we all know that if you allow any stick, let alone a God of Fire cigar to remain in your humidor for a while, the flavor will deepen as time passes. Can you withstand the urge to smoke this wonderful offering right away in order to partake of its deepened flavor later? Of course, you could just make sure you purchase an ample supply, and you then will not have to choose between waiting, or enjoying them now.
After all of these years, Fuente still maintains a family run business. When you have this much experience and know-how, combined with the passion it requires to produce an ultra-premium stick that suits your own taste first before offering it to the world, you can rest assured that you are getting the very best product that can possibly be made.
Gran Habano Cigars are extremely rich in both history and flavor. From the deep family traditions passed on from generation to generation to the impeccable business operations, this brand of cigars is a necessity for any true collection. The Gran Habano Cigar brand offers up a variety of unique tobacco blends to choose from making them accessible to levels of cigar smoking interests and taste preferences.
Don Guillermo Rico was the third generation in deeply planted cigar making roots. Beginning as early as 1920, his grandfather launched his position in the tobacco farming industry. The legacy continued on when his father joined in on the hard work and ultimate success. The intensive labor of his father working hands on in the fields and the expert cigar rolling of his mother were the examples Don Guillermo grew up with. It is not surprising that such family dedication and tradition would lead him to follow in their footsteps.
After relocating from Honduras to the United States in 1995 he initially worked in the cabinetry business and created cigar boxes on the side. He couldn’t deny where his heart was, though, and eventually established his own business. GR Tabaqueros Unidas, as it was called, began with selling tobacco leaves to other successful cigar producers in Florida. In 1998, his hard work paid off with the opening of his own cigar production factory in Miami. Their production and work force grew by leaps and bounds over the years as Don Guillermo bought up various prime tobacco farms in Nicaragua, Columbia, Panama, and Costa Rica. His stake in the industry was immense and proved that dreams do come true.
Gran Habano Cigars was the 2003 product of his true family tradition and quality craftsmanship. These handmade, long-filler smokes consist of five individual blends that utilize tobacco from each of his farming locations.
• Blend #1 is a mild to medium bodied cigar that pairs an Ecuadorian Connecticut wrapper with a Nicaraguan binder and filler. It is a smooth and aromatic smoke that provides a rich and creamy flavor palette.
• Blend #3 is a more complex medium bodied cigar that blends the tobaccos of Costa Rica, Nicaragua, and Mexico. The Nicaraguan Habano wrapper compliments the full flavor throughout the smoke.
• Blend #5 has the most intense blend of the family with a combination filler of Costa Rican and Nicaraguan tobaccos. The binder is of Costa Rican decent while the wrapper is a fiery Nicaraguan Corojo.
• The Gran Habano 3SLS is another full-bodied piece comprised of a shade-grown Nicaraguan Corojo wrapper and a unique filler blend of Costa Rican, Nicaraguan, and Columbian tobaccos.
• Gran Habano Cabinet Selection is another flavorful, full bodied cigar that sports a flawless Cuban-seed Corojo wrapper. The filler is strictly Nicaraguan tobacco leaves that burn slow and easy all the way through.
Each Gran Habano Cigar demonstrates the uniformity that is of great importance to Don Guillermo. From the farm to the production line, each cigar is intricately inspected throughout the process including a draw-test before the final wrapping is done.
Gran Habano Cigars are a true testament to what deep family roots and tradition can bring out in an individual’s dedication. Building his brand from the ground up, Don Guillermo dreamed of creating high quality, consistent cigars and that he did. From the #1 to the Cabinet Selection, these consistent smokes are an ideal addition to the personal humidor of any true cigar smoker.
Reviewers and enthusiasts alike rave about the excellence and superiority of Gurkha cigars. When it comes to the crème de la crème of stogies great or small, Gurkha cigars have definitely won the award, bringing an amazingly unique aspect to the world of fine tobacco. Though the company has only been around since the late 80s, they wasted no time in changing the way people look at tobacco.
Each stogie is hand-rolled to perfection using only the finest tobaccos, and some of those new techniques have insured the company has made an impression that will never be forgotten.
Imagine a stogie that has been infused with one of the best vintage cognacs in the world. Now that is what this fine name brings to the table. Amazing concepts hailed by the company that has taken its place as the Rolls Royce of tobacco.
Kaizad Hansotia took a trip to India in 1989 after being raised in London and Hong Kong only to discover a Portuguese gentleman selling delicious stogies. Of course, the impression was spectacular enough to cause Hansotia to purchase the name, brand, and entire stock from the gentleman for under $150. But Hansotia knew that this was something special.
Hansotia came from a family with a history in luxury timepieces, but this was a business opportunity that was undeniable and going to be lucrative. Upon meeting Charlie Torano through a mutual acquaintance, Hansotia teamed with this new business partner to face the challenges of being new in the industry.
Gurkha cigars were created to be different. Each one is uniquely handled and carefully processed to insure nothing but the best gets to the smoker. By insuring all of the senses are pleased, every stogie is a delectable example of what the best in the industry truly is. Of course, the truth lies not in what the advertisers say, but what the reviews have been saying.
No one has a bad word to speak about these stogies. Each leaf of tobacco is considered perfect with a firm roll, even smoke, and a taste that leaves the reviewers breathless. Back in 96, Hansotia teamed together a bottle of the rare Louis XIII de Remy Martin with tobacco that had been aged for 18-years. A single box of those stogies sold for a record breaking $15,000!
With names such as Black Dragon, Genghis Khan, Warlord, Assassin, and Dragon Fury, those stogies better live up to the imagery produced by the name. Each puff is a cherished experienced playing with all the senses, and that is why critics, enthusiasts and reviewers love what Gurkha cigars has to offer.
Sometimes, being the new kid on the block can be rough. But Hansotia has proven that experience comes in many forms and many opportunities. The name Gurkha cigars is synonymous with robust excellence and perfect craftsmanship within the industry. Every stogie is an experience that will keep the smoker smiling and enjoying the evening while sipping on a special glass of cognac warmed by the fireplace.
The H. Upmann Cigar brand name is representing premier cigars that are made for a Franc-Spanish tobacco company Altadis USA. The brand was established in 1844 and is among the oldest of the brands in cigar history. Around 1840, Herman Upmann a banker from Europe opened a branch office in Havana. This provided him with the opportunity to send cigars back to Europe.
In 1844 Upmann invested in the H. Upmann Cigar Factory and the brand as born.Upmann is sometimes given credit for the invention of the cedar boxes that are used during the packaging process. Back in the 1840’s they used the original boxes with the Upmann name and logo as advertisement. He would package other cigar brands in the boxes and to give to customers until he opened his own cigar factory in 1844.
The H. Upmann cigar factory is now known as the Jose’ Marti’ Factory, located in Havana. In 1922 both the bank and cigar business went bankrupt. J. Frankau & Co., a British firm bought the failing cigar brand. J Frankau & Co. continued production until 1935, when the company was purchased by Menendez y Garcia & Co., the makers of the world famous brand Montecristo. After the Cuban revolution, Menendez and Garcia moved the Upmann brand to the Canary Islands, then to its current home in the Dominican Republic. The production of H. Upmann cigars is still active for the American market under the ownership of Altadis USA. The line today includes the H. Upmann Black and Gold, H. Upmann Classic, H. Upmann Edicion Limitada, H. Upmann Reserve Maduro, H. Upmann Sun Grown, H. Upmann Tubed Classics, and the H. Upmann Vintage Cameroon.
A popular story about the cigar brand is that on the night before the embargo act was signed, John F. Kennedy had his aide Pierre Salinger hunt down all the H. Upmann Petit Coronas he could find in Washington DC, as they were his favorite brand. Pierre was able to locate a total of 1,200 of his favorite cigars. This story has been confirmed by Pierre himself, and helps make this brand even more famous.
The H. Upmann cigars are premium cigars that are highly recommended and a great tasting line of cigars. The line is full of sticks with complex flavors and smooth taste. There is a cigar for every occasion in this line, from celebrating an event such as a wedding or the birth of a child, to simply having a mellow midday smoke. With this brand being one of the oldest known, it has come quite a long way from a failing brand in the early 1900’s to now being a worldwide known and respected line. Altadis USA is a thriving cigar manufacturer, and therefore the H. Upmann name is definitely going to be around for much longer. Hermann Upmann would have been a very proud man had he been able to see the impact that his cigar brand would have on the cigar smoking industry. His name continues to carry on with high respect and a tantalizing effect on the taste buds of aficionados everywhere.
A cigar, by definition, is a tightly rolled group of cured, fermented tobacco leaves that one can ignite and smoke. Cigar smoke is like fine wine. It is meant to be savored, not gulped
By definition, a cigar is a tight roll of cured, fermented tobacco leaves that can be ignited and smoked. The intention of smoking a cigar is to draw the smoke into the mouth only (not the lungs) so the flavor of the tobacco can be tasted and savored.
Cigars differ from cigarettes on more than the simple level of appearance. The entire constitution of a cigar is different. Whereas cigarettes are manufactured out of shredded tobacco that is then machine rolled into thin pieces of paper, the more premium cigars are hand-rolled from whole tobacco leaves. The inner leaves that constitute the bulk of the cigar are called the cigar filler. The outer leaves are called the cigar wrapper.
Cigar tobacco is grown in many different parts of the world where the climate is mild and humid, and where the soil is loamy. These types of climate and soil conditions are necessary for tobacco to have the necessary flavor we want in our cigars. Latin American countries that grow cigar tobacco include Cuba, Brazil, The Dominican Republic, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Mexico. In Africa, it is grown in Cameroon, and in Southeast Asia, cigar tobacco is grown in The Philippines, Sumatra, and Indonesia.
Some cigar tobacco is also grown in the Eastern region of the United States.
Cigars smokers all agree that the tobacco and the way a cigar is put together determine if it is a great cigar or not.
Handmade cigars have always been considered the best.
Another determining factor in quality is the amount of filler that is used.
Using fewer leaves in the filler makes the cigar burn more quickly. This may or may not be desirable depending on the preferences of the smoker.
If the cigar is overfilled, it will be harder for the smoker to draw smoke.
This is why we need to have a balance of filler in a fine cigar. Only then can we be assured that when it is lit, it will burn evenly at the expected rate.
The evenness of the burn, if we may use that term, depends on how the cigar was rolled.
Other qualities of fine cigar include its ash and its texture. Ash is very important, because nothing is more annoying than ash falling everywhere.
A good cigar feels both springy and firm to the touch. It also feels smooth and has only one shade of color in the wrapper.
A good cigar should be smooth, flavorful, and should never be harsh or burn the mouth. The flavor is determined by a number of factors, like the aging and curing of tobacco, and what is done to ferment it. Well-aged and fermented tobaccos are works of patience and careful cultivation. The process cannot be rushed because it is all about timing and intuition.
Blending different tobaccos together often creates unique flavors in cigars. Often fillers from different fields and countries will be combined to create exotic flavors and new adventures in smoking taste.
Our Main Cigar store is located in Houston Texas, however we also service all 50 states including New York NY, Los Angeles CA, Miami, FL. Chicago, IL. Denver CO., El Paso, Texas, Dallas TX DFW, San Antonio, TX, Austin, TX, Boise ID, Atlanta GA, Raleigh-Durham NC, Washington DC, Albuquerque NM, Huntsville AL, Fayetteville AR, Norfolk VA , Madison WI.
Herrera Esteli cigars are produced by Drew Estate. They were created by Willy Herrera, a blend master who left El Titan de Bronze for Drew Estate last year. Willy reportedly tried out 75 blends before settling on this one. He insisted that the company roll these sticks using the entubado style. This technique is exceedingly difficult because it requires the worker to roll the filler while inside the binder. In fact, Willy had to train the cigar rollers how to perform this technique. However, the effort paid off, because it evenly distributed the air inside the stogie, making for a uniform burn and superb flavor balance.
Even though Drew Estate has based most of its operations in Nicaragua, the Herrera Esteli cigars pay homage to Cuban styles in appearance and blend. It is slowly making its way to retailer shelves, as the tobacco must be aged before it is ready. It is available in five vitolas, including Robusto Extra (4 7/8 x 46), Corona (5 1/4 x42), Lonsdale (6 x 44), Piramide Fino (6 x 52) and Toro Especial (6 1/4 x 52). The wrapper is Ecuadorian Habano, the binder is from Honduras, and the filler is a combination of Jalapa and Esteli Nicaraguan tobaccos. Most reviewers stated that the stogie is large and solid when held, although it feels slightly spongy when squeezing. The paper is light brown and has no visible veins, though it has a little tooth to it. The band is white with gold trim and red lettering, with “Bolivar” stamped on it in all caps.
The pre-light draw conjures barnyard, mint and wood notes. Once one of the Herrera Esteli cigars is lit, it immediately produces an intensely sweet maple flavor. Other tastes in the first third include spice, oak, cream, citrus, nuts and leather, although only the spice competes with the maple sweetness for dominant note. At the end of the first third, the spice disappears and is replaced with pepper.
During the second third of the Herrera Esteli cigars, the maple sweetness changes into vanilla while the pepper grows in intensity— though a smoker can only detect it while retrohaling. Several other flavors play in the background, including bitter citrus, oak, earth and peanuts.
In the final third, the vanilla switches back to maple sweetness, and the cream surges back. The oak, nuts and citrus still remain and are joined by coffee. The pepper is even stronger now, though it is still only apparent during the retro-hale.
The majority of reviewers found that the Herrera Esteli cigars fall comfortably in the medium-full range when it comes to body and strength. Still, it is one of the lighter offerings from Drew Estate. The draw and burn are both top-notch, and many reviewers said that stick produces a huge amount of smoke. Ash was salt and pepper, and in the Toro Especial, it held on for two inches before giving out. The burn stays true throughout, which is necessary, because this stick is delicate and easily damaged. Even blowing on it caused some minor issues for some reviewers, but while smoking, it holds together perfectly when handled with care.
State-owned Cuban tobacco manufacturer Hoyo De Monterrey produces cigars that have captured the attention of avid cigar smokers. The Le Hoyo, Double Coronas, and Epicure No. 2 series are all exceptionally prized by connoisseurs. A variety of sizes and strengths await the consumer wanting a positive, unique experience when it comes to enjoying a superior stogie.
Reviewers have nothing but good things to say about the company. There are a number of series, each with its own flavor, strength, and popularity. Hoyo De Monterrey cigars are each constructed by a manufacturer that has been around longer than most other companies. Being one of the most renowned names in the industry definitely has its advantages. Tried and true techniques help this manufacturer design a tobacco product appreciated by more smokers.
Nicaraguan, Honduran, and Dominican tobaccos combine to introduce the Dark Sumatra series. The binder is an aged-to-perfection Connecticut Broadleaf, and the wrapper is constructed from an elegant Ecuadorian Dark Sumatra. The series is a robust smoking experience. This balanced cigar is a sweet cocoa with earthy overtones. While this is on the robust side, it never has a bitterness or harshness. An even burn and cost effective price make the Dark Sumatra series a choice for any connoisseur.
The Reposado en Cedros has Honduran, Nicaraguan, and Dominican tobaccos that make up the filler of these popular stogies. Add in the Connecticut binder and the Sumatra wrapper, and many of the reviewers said that it made for a pleasing smoking experience. The Reposado en Cedros is a medium bodied smoke with a strength that almost places it on the full bodied end of the spectrum. The overtones of cedar compliment the spicy earth flavors ensuring a delicate combination of tastes. The burn on this is even and lacks the need for touchups or relights.
Hoyo De Monterrey cigars are a favorite among aficionados. The manufacturer has been around long enough to gain the experience necessary to provide a superior smoke. While the company leans towards a full bodied stick, there remain a number of medium bodied sticks appreciated by all levels of smokers. The company has a rock solid reputation in the industry for stable and consistent stogies.
The Excalibur Epicure utilizes the big three producers of tobaccos – Dominican Republic, Nicaragua, and Honduras. The Maduro wrapper and Connecticut binder make a nice dessert stogie. A nutty chocolate and tea flavor makes this a sweet example of why Hoyo De Monterrey cigars are highly sought. Earthy tones and a peppery cedar complement the Excalibur Epicure, and an even burn with little need to relight ensure this stick will find a home in more personal and professional humidors.
Hoyo De Monterrey cigars are a unique blend of three tobaccos manufactured in the heart of Cuba. The experienced manufacturer always guarantees a rock solid performance with its delicious blend of high quality tobaccos and processing techniques. Each stick provides the smoker with a better cigar whether obtained via the internet or a local shop. Reviewers claim the smoking experience of these sticks is pleasurable for all who have had the chance to do so.
A cigar humidor isa box or a room that keeps constant humidity, used to store cigars, cigarettes, and pipe tobacco.Cigar humidors are made from one three types of wood: Spanish Cedar, American Red Cedar, or Honduran Mahogany.Spanish cedar, unlike the name suggests, does not originate from Spain.It comes out of the rain forests of Brazil and Central America.
Due to the fact that it is a rain forest species, it has a number of remarkable qualities.It holds humidity better than almost any other type of wood, and it has a scent that repels beetles—including tobacco beetles.It also does not warp like other kinds of wood do.Because it is a species of cedar, it has that same wonderful smell that other cedar species have which imparts an additional hint of aroma to cigars.
Many humidors are made from a case that is constructed from of solid wood.The interior is lined by with Spanish cedar.Some humidors are made entirely from Spanish cedar and require not interior lining.Other humidors are designed around what is called an MDF (medium density fiberboard) design.The exterior is a veneer made from a species of hardwood, such as cherry, and the interior is lined with a veneer of Spanish cedar.
Inside the humidor, there is a humidification system that consists of a 1:1 ratio of distilled water and Propylene Glycol.The PG keeps the relative humidity balanced.All cigar humidors rely on a hygrometer to keep track of humidity levels.The hygrometer measures RH to ensure that the interior of the cigar humidor maintains the correct humidity level.Correctly calibrating the hygrometer is a must to ensure proper operation of the humidification system.
Cigar humidors offer a number of benefits to cigars and cigar smokers.The most obvious of these is that they help keep the flavor and burn rate of the cigar to an optimal level.You see, if a cigar is too dry, it becomes fragile and burns too fast.If it is too damp, it burns unevenly and is characterized by an acidic and taste.In order to burn at just the right rate, and in order for it to taste as intended, the cigar must absorb humidity at 14% of its own rate.To achieve this rate of absorption, the interior of the humidor must have a relative humidity of 68%-74%.
People often wonder just how many types of humidors there are.Actually, cigar humidors only fall into basic design categories like anything else.These fourdifferent types of humidors are listed as follows:
1.Table humidor- This type of humidor is common in cigar stores and remains in one place.It can hold up to a few thousand cigars
2.Travel humidor- This is the smallest type of humidor.It is portable and can hold 10-40 cigars
3.Personal humidor- This type is slightly larger than the travel size, holds 30-100 cigars, and is kept in the home or in the office.
4.Room humidor- This is an entire room that has been converted into a humidor and is found in larger cigar stores and cigar smoking bars.
Illusione Cigars have created quite a buzz among cigars smokers, and any connoisseur will tell you how truly unique the brand is and how colorful of a character the person is behind it. Dion Giolito’s mission when he created the concept of illusione Cigars was to introduce a brand that would re-create the taste profile of cigars coming out of Nicaragua before the Sandinista take over in 1979. The Jalapa Valley and Estelí regions of Nicaragua were growing some of the best tobacco at that time, and the cigars that came out of this area were strong, bold, clean and aromatic. For two decades prior to the political unrest, which characterized the reign of the Sandinistas, Nicaragua was certainly in the midst of its hay-day when it came to producing some of the finest tasting cigars in the world.
Sadly the legacy of these verdant plantations was nearly lost during Nicaragua’s turbulent years from 1979 to 1990. However, a “dream team” of master growers and famed Cuban agronomists assembled to cultivate and regrow these modest Somoza fields, allowing them to yield to their fullest potential once again. The illusione cigar is a product of that effort and delivers a flavor and quality of smoke that is rare in today’s market.
Dion Giolito, self proclaimed “Dark Overlord of the Leaf”, and sometimes known as vudu9 on some forums, is quite a personality. He has a certain view of world control, which is reflective in the name of his cigars. According to Dion, “We are fed the ideas that certain countries and heads of state are in control and run things. That’s the furthest from the truth. They’re smoke and mirrors, puppets, figureheads, ‘illusions.’ The real power is far deeper and, much darker than we see.” Conspiracy theorists would get a kick out of Giolito’s thought processes that gave rise to the naming of his brand.
Giolito owns his own cigar shop, named Fumaré in Reno, Nevada. Although he had been in the retail business for 15 years prior, it wasn’t until he opened his own shop that he considered doing his own line several years ago. Giolito has vowed to keep his productions limited, never to exceed 500 thousand in a year. His focus is on quality and not quantity, which is characteristic of all boutique brands. Every illusione cigar is Honduran-made with Nicaraguan puros and wrapped in grade one Café Colorado wrapper. The seeds are all Corojo ’99 and Criollo ’98 and each vitola is triple capped.
One unique fact about the illusione brand is that unlike other cigars that offer the same blend in different sizes, Giolito’s blends are different in each vitola. He also code dates each of his cigar boxes and says that illusione cigars are constructed to have a life of 10 years inside the box. Each cigar is banded with a thin black and white band with gothic lettering which are reminiscent of the dark overtones of conspiracy theorists world wide. Even their names are in Giolito’s special code that reflects what each one means to him.
These guys are definitely an interesting bunch. And who knows, if the world does come to end as we know it in 2012, illusione cigars will live on tucked safely in their boxes to be enjoyed ten years down the road by all the lucky cigar smoking survivors out there!
J Fuego cigars are produced by Jesus Fuego who is the founder of the company and president of the Tabacos S.A. in Honduras where they are produced. He learned his trade in Cuba where his family has been in the tobacco business for generations. Perhaps what makes his story a little different than other current generations that are operating in the tobacco business is that he attended college in Havana, Cuba. There he received a Master’s Degree in Agronomy which is the study of things such as plant genetics and the science of soil. He went on to use this information in making the harvest process much better for tobacco. This allows him to be able to focus on how to make the tobacco product even better without altering the seeds, but rather focusing on the post-harvest leaf itself.
The founder of J Fuego cigars then left Cuba in 1990 to go to Honduras. A little later, his work seemed to catch the interest of Rocky Patel, and he would then eventually become one who worked very closely with him. Together they would go on to create many popular blends.
However in 2006, the founder of J Fuego cigars would decide to introduce his own line. J Fuego cigars were born and his first two offerings were the Natural and Gran Reserva Corojo No. 1. Both of these feature multinational blends. The Natural has a Criollo wrapper. The Gran Reserva offers up a Corojo wrapper. All of the tobaccos used in these two lines are grown specifically for these blends. The Natural uses tobaccos blended from three different countries while the Gran Reserva offers a blend from four different countries.
He often jokes with friends that these are offerings he made strictly for himself, but then he decided that perhaps he could share them with other people. That seems to make the winning combination of his success, which is his expertise and his ability to be humble and, of course, a sense of humor is mixed in as well.
Like many in the tobacco industry, he believes in the Cuban history of quality over quantity. Each stick is hand produced without using a machine. Mass production takes away from the craftsmanship that is employed at his factory, and therefore, he would never do that. This keeps these fine boutique offerings uniquely consistent no matter where you buy them or when.
J Fuego cigars have gone on to introduce other lines in the past years. Some of those offerings are: The 777, the 777 Corojo, the Origen, the Delirium, and Sangre de Toro. Most of these are described as boldly flavored sticks that aren’t for the smoker who doesn’t like something that is very robust, however they have received rave reviews. It is said they are not overpowering but very full-bodied and would be appreciated by the veteran smoker who likes something a little more complex.
With a Master’s Degree and generations of tobacco making expertise to draw from, it is no wonder that these premium sticks are well sought after in the industry.
When one lights up any one of the Java cigars, they know they are in for something unique and unforgettable. It is because it was made by two of the industry’s most formidable players, Jonathan Drew and Rocky Patel. Together, they ventured into the Java cigars line. They offer multiple sizes and both the Connecticut and Maduro wrapper. Now, the Java cigar line is part of Rocky's line, but he ventured down the road into the infused with the help of Jonathan Drew.
Many people who smoke a good stick may or may not be familiar with the two men listed above, but they have undoubtedly smoked a stogie from one of their lines. For Rocky Patel, his love of premium smokes began back in his Hollywood days. He quickly became enamored with fine smokes and was one of the original founders of Grand Havana Club. While he was on his quest of fine smokes, he was approached about the possibility of manufacturing his own line. Even though it seemed like a daunting task, he went for it. The industry and its aficionados will always be grateful he did. He realized that there was something missing in the industry and knew he could fill that niche above and beyond. He debuted his Indian Taba Cigar Company in 1996. He was an instant success, drawing much attention to his unique packaging and the utmost in quality. In 2003, he decided to venture into different types of smokes and focused his attention on the Rocky Patel Vintage Series. This series put him above his competition in creating one of the most unique and beautifully complex smokes. These have afforded him the prestigious 90 plus ratings given by Cigar Aficionado magazine. This is a coveted award by most in this industry. His idea to create what he felt was missing in the industry has been fulfilled by this line.
When Rocky Patel entered into his relationship with Jonathan Drew, of Drew Estates, it was to create Java Cigars. Rocky was looking for a way to add infused sticks into his repertoire and engaging Drew Estates on this venture was the only way to go. Drew Estates are almost synonymous with infused smokes. Three of their lines, ACID, Ambrosia, and Natural have earned them high praises in the industry. They themselves are among the highest selling infused sticks in the world. Drew Estates began with the determination of Jonathan Drew and Marvin Samel. Since its humble beginnings in New York City, to its impressive growth with the doors opening at their La Gran Fabrica Drew Estates in 2007 in their beloved Nicaragua, this factory is the largest of its kind in Nicaragua. It is also one of the world’s largest premium cigar factories. Their true passion and love is evident in every vitola they produce.
With these two formidable creators working together, no one can dispute that the Java cigars line is a fabulous one. With its offering of two different wrappers and multiple sizes, there really is one for everyone to try. The Java cigars are also available in Coffee, Latte, and Mint. There is a delicate blend of chocolate, vanilla, and coffee. Most would agree that the construction of these is perfection. Most reviewers state that the draw is flawless, and it burns straight to the end of the smoke. The smoke itself is an enjoyable aroma, even to non-smokers. These are a must have to anyone's humidor.
Joya de Nicaragua cigars are a fairly recent addition to the long, rich history of tobacco and stogies. The first factory did not open in the country until the 1960s. The Antano, which is the very first among the country’s lines is preferred by smokers who like to choose their sticks from that region. A decade after the Antano line was initially released the Dark Corojo line was released. Compared to other countries involved in tobacco production, that is a fairly late entry into the competitive stogie market.
The company, which is located in Esteli, was first opened in the 1960s. These handcrafted sticks are sold in over 30 countries throughout the world. The translation of Joya de Nicaragua cigars is ”jewel of Nicaragua,” in tribute to the culture of the bold, rich, and vibrant country. Of course they have experienced the rises and falls in the country’s past 40 years in history, with the country being relieved of dictatorship, suffering from both a trade embargo from America as well as the consequences of war consequences. Now, however, this Latin American country is finally becoming a triumphant state once more.
Some of those businesses who were also around during the 1970’s speak of the line in nearly hushed tones of awe. Consider that these stogies were officially the U.S. White House stogie at that point. For nearly a decade, they were presented State dinner guests. In 1978, sales of these sticks in the U.S. reached up to 9.5 million, which made it a best-seller among the premium cigars of that time.
The dictator, President Anastasio Somoza Debayle visited the American White House in 1971. He brought along some Joya de Nicaragua cigars for Nixon and was astonished to see that the stogies already had a strong White House presence. When he returned home, he purchased the company; the company’s owners Bermejo and Camacho did not have much true choice in the matter. They sold the business and emigrated from the country soon after.
After control of the government was taken over by the Sandinistas, commercial organizations were then nationalized. Dr. Martinez-Cuenca was the business representative in the 80’s. His job as Minister of Trade included opening access for domestic products to foreign markets. He focused on Europe, which was soon the best market because there was then an American trade embargo at that time.
In the election of 1990, the Sandinistas lost control of the State, and privatization soon followed. The brand ownership of the Joya de Nicaragua cigars, as well as that of the factory now belonged to the company’s employees, but with the large number of voices clamoring regarding any decision, the company was doing poorly. This paved the way for Dr. Martinez-Cuenca to purchase it in 1994. He wanted to bring back the mystique that was lost when the company was nationalized. He is quite proud of the company, and its place in tobacco history, as many people have learned the fundamentals of the field there before moving on to other companies.
Even with such a late entry into the world of stogie making, the country’s first company has already had a long, rich history, albeit an abridged one, and cigar smoking enthusiasts around the world can look forward to a long life for the Joya de Nicaragua cigars.
Kristoff cigars have been produced since their inception in 2005. They are billed as one of the most up and coming boutique lines that are on the market today. They are made with tobaccos that are double and triple fermented. These tobaccos come from Honduras, the Dominican Republic, and Nicaragua. They are offered in many different sizes.
Kristoff cigars are found wrapped in both Nicaraguan Habano Criollo and Brazilian Maduro. The fillers include Cuban Dominican and Honduran tobacco. This gives them their unique flavors such as cocoa and almond along with a note of licorice as well.
Kristoff cigars also offer the Ligero which is available in two different types of wrappers. One wrapper is a Honduran Criollo. The other is a Brazilian Maduro. Being blended with Nicaraguan ligero is how they got their name. This line will give flavor notes such as cocoa as well as a nutty taste. They also feature other delectable flavors such as caramel, coffee, and various different notes of spiciness.
Kristoff cigars are also rolled in the Dominican Republic. They are shipped out in boxes that are wooden, and they pack the boxes with tobacco leaves for a unique way of keeping the smokes fresh.
These Cigars are made by Glen Case. He is also the man who was responsible for the brand Vengeance and their Maduros. He is president of the company that manufactures them known as Exclusive Cigars, Inc. His company is very much self-promoted by going to conventions to make his products known to those who may not be familiar with them. They have recently seen the product introduced to the European market.
Some of the product lines include:
• Corojo Limitada
• GC Sumatra Series
• Brittania Reserva
• Cuban Selection
• Premium Selection
• It's A Boy/It's A Girl
• The New Series 98
Headquartered in Illinois, the company continues to promote their product to the connoisseurs who are more and more enamored with their product line. Many of their products are limited production items that are only released to select shops throughout the U.S. and abroad. This means that some of the more popular smokes are extremely rare and hard to find.
This company has grown in leaps and bounds since it began, and it continues to find forward momentum with each new convention. Word of mouth has helped a lot in the smoker community as a vehicle to get the word out about these great new offerings from this relatively young business.
Expect for the name to become more and more synonymous with the premium offerings. When something has great expectations of and for itself, it is only a matter of time until success is global. This is the case with Exclusive. This company produces a top of the line product that receives more and more accolades as more people explore the great taste sensations that they have to offer. Humidors are starting to fill up with these sticks, and, as they do, their popularity will only continue to increase. This will mean that they will become harder to come by.
There are many small boutique cigar makers that are producing excellent blends for aficionados, and Kuuts Cigars is among the best. This company was specifically created for the U.S. market. It is owned by the people who built the Compania Honduerna de Tabacos factory in Honduras and Promo Tobacco of Spain. John Gonzalez and Gabriel Alvarez are the men in charge of the brand. The brand oversees all parts of the manufacturing process in one facility, giving Gonzalez and Alvarez excellent control over product quality.
The manufacturer currently produces three lines of stogies, all medium or medium to full bodied cigars. The Miro is Kuuts Cigars strongest blend, and is available in four vitolas. These formats include Gordo (5 1/4 x 60), Robusto (6 1/8 x 52), Toro (6 x 52) and Torpedo (6 1/8 x 52). It comes with a Sumatra wrapper, a Nicaraguan binder, and fillers from Nicaragua and Honduras. The wrapper is chocolate brown and has an oily sheen. It is said to be very smooth, with little veining and well-hidden seams. It has an interesting collection of flavors, with a sweet cold draw that some reviewers thought tasted like blueberry. Once lit, though, the flavors got much heavier. During the first third of the stick, woody and earthy flavors are the dominant notes. In the second third, these flavors are joined by a zesty citrus note. The final third was hard to describe for many aficionados and combines many light, sweet notes creating an interesting whole.
The second stick in the Kuuts Cigars brand is the Placeres Reserva. It comes with a Nicaraguan Habano wrapper, a Costa Rican binder and several fillers from Honduras and Nicaragua. It comes in five vitolas, including Marevas (5 x 42), Estrellas (5 x 50), Belicosos (5 1/2 x 52), Colosos (6 x 54) and Toro Grande (6 x 60). The stick is box-pressed and has a dark wrapper that’s extremely smooth. The cold draw contains earth and leather notes. In the first and second third of the Placeres Reserva, citrus, cedar, cocoa and coffee notes develop and balance off of each other. In the final third of the stick, the cedar and cocoa flavors are the strongest, while the citrus and coffee hang in the background. Reviewers consider this stogie to be medium to full in body and strength.
The Tabacalera Zapata is the final stick in the Kuuts Cigars line-up. It’s a medium bodied smoke that comes with a Connecticut Oscuro wrapper from Honduras, a Honduran binder, and fillers from Honduras, Nicaragua and Jaltepec. The wrapper is medium brown and has some light veining. The cold draw produces grassy and earthy flavors with a light lemon taste. The first third of the stick contains grassy and hay notes, along with some sour citrus. The second third develops these flavors more, though it contains the core grassy and hay notes, with some cedar and earth flavors as well. The final third evokes some coffee tastes along with the grass and hay.
These cigars were originally designed for the European market, but Kuuts Cigars are starting to catch on in the U.S. too. Aficionados in America are also taking notice of the company’s dedication to produce premium stogies.
They may be new to the industry, but L Atelier cigars are already gaining traction among aficionados for several reasons. The company was created in 2012, so they haven’t been around for very long at all, but they made some noise at this year’s IPCPR. There, Pete Johnson, the owner, along with Dan Welsh, of New Havana Cigars fame, revealed their product lines. The business put out four releases this year, in addition to two bundles.
The operation’s namesake comes from the French word for ‘workshop’, and these smokes live up to their moniker. The blends are produced by Johnson himself, and L Atelier cigars are manufactured at the My Fathers factory in Esteli, Nicaragua. Aside from the flagship stick, the smokes are all aimed at the economic range, and though they are more than just inexpensive stogies, they are very budget friendly. However, the two worthy of special mention are the flagship stick, appropriately named L Atelier, and the oddly named Crystal Baller.
These two products in the L Atelier cigars family are both premium quality, and are both in the $8-10 range. The flagship stick has Nicaraguan tobacco in the filler and binder, but has a wrapper that unique. It is a mixture of Pelo de Oro and Criollo, and is called Sancti Spiritus. It has a Colorado look to it, and has some small veins and a little tooth to it. It is expertly put together, though, and possesses a beautiful triple cap to top it off.
The flavor complexity and strength are also memorable aspects of this stogie, and it starts off with a bang. Tea leaves, Indian spices, cedar, earth, ammonia, fruit and meat are all notes that reviewers have recognized in this smoke, and they meld perfectly together so that they all get their turn. The ammonia fades near the end, and the fruitiness turns pleasantly sour. Like with all other L Atelier cigars, the burn and draw are both top notch. Reviewers have consistently given scores in the high 90s to the flagship product.
The Crystal Baller is as peculiar as its name, and is also a premium stick with some nice, uncommon flavors. It’s a large smoke, and comes in at 5 3/4” and a 56 ring gauge. It also has Nicaraguan tobacco in the filler and binder, but the wrapper is a more familiar Ecuadorian Habano Obscuro. Reviewers are generally pleased with how L Atelier cigars burn once lit, and the Crystal Baller is no exception. What does make it stand out, though, is its sumptuous blend of flavors.
Smokers, especially those from the South, find that the stogie opens up with a taste that can be best described as buttermilk biscuit-like. This note stays around for the duration of the smoke, and is joined by a balanced trio of molasses, salt and spice. This combines to evoke images of a hearty meal, and the Crystal Baller hangs onto this until the nub, which explains why reviewers are placing it in the 92-94 range. These are just two of the company’s samplings, and their penchant for unique blends means that they will likely garner a strong following.
Miami Cigar and Company is the producer of La Aurora cigars. The company was founded in 1989. The founders, Nestor and Mariana Miranda, were born in Cuba. Because of their Cuban heritage, they bring with them some of the best that the tobacco business has to offer. From the old world style to the great taste of the Dominican Republic tobaccos, it is no wonder that all of the lines from this company have been extremely successful.
The La Aurora cigars and the tobacco company that they are named for has been in existence since 1903. Founded by Don Eduardo Leon Jimenes, they are the oldest producers of tobacco in the Dominican Republic. This enterprise is located in an area called Santiago de los Caballeros in the Cibao Valley. The founder is known for his rolling techniques that are still employed today.
Under the La Aurora cigars brand there are several lines to be found including but not limited to:
• Guillermo Leon
• Preferidos 1903 Edition
• Leon Jimenes Prestige
• 1495 Series
• 1495 BME Series
These sticks offer smoothness and loads of flavor. They also feature Cameroon wrappers from West Africa. This makes them quite unique. Described as being rather mild, these smokes definitely are not lacking when it comes to great tobacco taste.
Anytime two great tobacco companies team up, the results are going to be a true treasure to experience. This is the case with Miami and La Aurora cigars. The amount of experience and know-how combined with some of the best tobacco fields adds up to nothing short of greatness. Between the two companies, there are many great lines that offer sophistication, flavor, and Cuban seed tobacco that cannot be matched by any other. In an industry that is being bombarded by up and coming new arrivals, it is always good to know that those that have been in the business the longest are still producing lines that leave some of these newcomers with something to aim towards.
The complexity of the La Aurora cigars is present in each of the lines produced. It is not difficult to see that the reputation that they enjoy has been earned. They also offer some of the best sticks that are available in everything from medium to full body. When a company can boast about being the oldest one in the country, it is not hard to understand that the results will be complete perfection.
Between these two companies, they have successfully garnered the respect of those who are aficionados in the industry. They set the bar high for those that follow them and those who are considered competitors. It is difficult to image that any tobacco company could ever produce a more authentic stick.
In many humidors and smokers clubs, these are the quality sticks that are found most often. With the heritage and experience to go with the extremely pleasing taste and flavor, these smokes are the epitome of what every other company should strive for which is tobacco excellence.
LaCima cigars are the creation of tobacco magic by Gracia y Leon of La Aurora and Arsenio Ramos of My Father cigars. They are a Nicaraguan puro, and the ENg was designed to be one of those smokes that could be enjoyed anytime of the day. It is made with Nicaraguan fillers and Nicaraguan binders that come from the same area. They are wrapped in an Ecuadorian Connecticut wrapper. The flavors and tastes have been said to be unlike anything before them, and aficionados everywhere are just now discovering the goodness of this smoke.
Launched in 2010, this line has the best Nicaraguan tobaccos that can be found anywhere in the country. The LaCima cigars classic line includes:
• Classic Belicoso, 6 ½” x 52
• Classic Robusto, 5" x 52
• Classic Toro, 6" x 54
The classic line features a natural color. They are all described as being extremely full bodied.
The LaCima cigars ENg line includes:
• ENg Gordo, 6" x 60
• ENg Robusto, 5" x 50
• ENg Robusto Grande, 5 1/2" x 54
• ENg Toro, 6" x 52
Much like the classic line, the ENg line also features an all-natural color to the offerings. This ENg line is described as being medium bodied.
While LaCima Cigars are still relatively new on the market, many people are drawn to take a chance with these great smokes simply because of the names that are involved in their creation.
One reviewer noted that when the smoke is first lit that there is a lot of peppery flavor notes with hints of leather and spice. Just into the first third it was noted as having a bit of bitterness that accompanied the peppery taste. The pepper was described as being a bit overwhelming for some, but yet sort of a powder accent from the lips to the throat. There is plenty of smoke but the body of the smoke is described as being rather light. Then into the end of the first third, there is a nutty taste that starts to emerge. This nutty flavor mixed with the pepper leaves a zing on the tongue, much like one would encounter when eating spicy foods. It begins to taper off towards the middle, but the peppery taste still remains. One reviewer said that the peppers that were discovered tasted like those that are found in white, red, black and even green peppercorns.
The reviewer went on to say that from the beginning there was also a sweetness that offset the peppery notes as well as the slight bitterness, giving it a very distinct flavor. Through the middle third of the smoke the peppery taste began to subside somewhat. LaCima cigars overall flavor seems to remain the same throughout, with the intensity of the pepper being the one thing that seems to ramp up and ebb back. Towards the end of the stick it was noted that there is a leathery type of taste that seems to slightly introduce itself.
Overall, the reviews that are available are all favorable and everyone recommends this great new line of smokes to all aficionados and connoisseurs.
The history of La Gloria Cubana cigars dates all the way back to 1885. At one time, these little treasures were a well kept Havana secret, but today they have become a cigar brand loved all over the world. Most famous for the R series, La Gloria Cubana cigars are available in more than twenty-three sizes that are not only bold, but they also taste like royalty…luxurious.
In 1885 Sociedad Cabanas Castro created the La Gloria Cubana brand, which until 1954 remained relatively obscure. In 1905, Jose F. Rocha, founder of Bolivar Cigars, bought the La Gloria marquee in an effort to expand his tobacco empire. Still, the prominence of La Gloria Cubana would not come till many years later with the help of none other than the Cifuentes family…shocker.
If you know anything about the Cifuentes family, then you will agree that it is no surprise that when they put their hand in anything regarding tobacco, it turns to gold. So Mr. Rocha passes on in 1954, and the Cifuentes bought La Gloria Cubana, as well as Bolivar, and moved production to their Partagas factory. In 1958, the Partagas Factory became the second largest exporter of Cuban cigars, next to H. Upmann accounting for over a quarter of all export ted tobacco goods. Cifuentes y Cia continued to manufacture La Gloria and Bolivar until the Castro Revolution, when the newly formed Cubatabaco arm of the government took over the factory and cigar production there.
After a hiatus of over 17 years, the patron of the family, Ramon Cifuentes, began to produce Partagas, Bolivar, and La Gloria Cubana cigars for The General Cigar Company and the U.S. market from Jamaica. In 1968, Ramon moved production to a farm and factory in the Dominican Republic where they are still made today, as well as in a factory in Little Havana located in Miami. Prior Co-owner, Ernesto Perez-Carrillo, Jr. founded the Miami factory, El Credito Cigar Company, and created the most popular La Gloria R Series in 1999 for smokers who wanted a full-bodied taste in a larger cigar. Their larger sizes and ring gages helped create today’s tremendous demand for a larger, full-bodied smoke.
La Gloria Cubana cigars are hand rolled and produced in small quantities, which lend itself to high quality and perfection. They are made with a special blend of Nicaraguan and Dominican filler and binder, wrapped in an exquisite Ecuadorian aged wrapper, ensuring their boldly rich flavor for which the brand is adored. La Gloria Cubana cigars also manufactures two machine-made cigarillos, they are named Purito and Mini.
La Gloria Cubana Hand-Made Vitolas
• Taíno – 7” x 47 “Julieta” (Churchill)
• Médaille d'Or No. 1 - 7 1/4" x 36 (185 x 14.29 mm) - name: Delicado Extra, a long panatela
• Médaille d'Or No. 2 - 6 3/4" x 43 (170 x 17.07 mm) - name: Dalia, a lonsdale
• Médaille d'Or No. 3 - 6 7/8" x 28 (175 x 11.11 mm) - name: Panetela Larga, a slim panatela
• Médaille d’Or No. 4 – 6” x 32 (152 x 12.70 mm) - name: Palmita, a panatela
The La Libertad cigars came onto the tobacco scene in 2010 when Villiger Stokkebye International debuted the line in New Orleans at the IPCPR show held in July. The La Libertad cigars are from the Dominican Republic and come in three popular sizes. The wrapper is of a Habano seed tobacco while the binder is of a Nicaraguan seed tobacco. They are both grown in the fertile Peruvian fields. The filler is a combination of Dominican and Nicaraguan Ligero. This line is considered the new blend, coming from the Dominican rather than from the traditional location of Honduras.
Villiger Stokkebye International is a merging of two families that are world renowned in the tobacco industry. Multiple generations of tobacconists are combined to encompass over 250 years of experience. The first in the namesake is the Villiger family, who come from Switzerland. They began their endeavors into the tobacco industry in the small town of Pfeffikon in 1888. The second half of the namesake is the Stokkebye family, who are from Denmark. This family started their adventures with tobacco products in 1882.
The new line of La Libertad cigars is being well received among aficionados all over. The hand rolled smokes are tapered at both ends, giving them an old fashioned looking style. Those who have tried them were very excited that they were largely made from Peruvian grown tobaccos. Reviewers unanimously noted that they were firm to the touch and consistently so when rolled between the fingers. They felt it was well balanced in the hand and had typical Peruvian aromas of moss and barnyard notes when the foot was brought up to the nose. The first taste that hit the palate upon lighting was the spice and the pepper rolling through the nose. Through the first third, smokers can expect to find the wood and earth flavors that are only known to sticks rolled from tobacco grown in Peru. This was a distinguishing factor that was noticed by those who reviewed this long awaited smoke.
Going into the second third, reviewers noted the presence of rich caramel combining flawlessly with the taste of nuts. The pepper flavors were said to be slightly lingering in the background. Rolling through to the final third of the La Libertad cigars, it was said that the flavor profile moved on to toasty notes and leather. All stated that they had no problems with the ash holding for at least a full inch. They also enjoyed the thick and plentiful smoke that this stick provided. It filled the room with pleasantness, and all enjoyed the relaxing hour and a half with their favorite drink. Being medium bodied, reviewers said this is one they could enjoy just about any time.
La Libertad cigars would be a great addition to any humidor. Consider buying a box and sharing with friends. They would make a great addition to a gift basket as well. There has always been a fascination with Cuban cigars, but trying one of these may turn people on to sticks rolled from wonderful leaves grown in Peru instead.
A common occurrence whenever one of the La Palina cigars is touched by a favorite torch lighter is the dancing swirls of smoke that cascade around your nostrils and invigorate your senses leaving them yearning in anticipation of yet another puff of this amazing cigar. Rapture and ecstasy indeed!
The band on this unique stick is awesome and usually it is the “talk of the town” so to speak when cigar smokers are gathered together enjoying these aromatic goodies. It has a very classy band which resembles a cameo. It is simply beautiful with white, gold, and charcoal colors. The cigar wrapper is Ecuadorian. It has a nice oily sheen to it, beautifully adorning this premium cigar which has absolutely no soft spots at all. Keeping it from being too perfect to be true without affecting its quality, the wrapper has a coarse feel to it with some visible veins.
The pre-light draw has a rich bittersweet chocolate taste to it while the foot of the cigar has a spicy note to it. Some aficionados like to have a beverage handy when smoking their deliciously sweet sticks and once ignited this smoke has a leathery taste until the sweet caramel and cocoa notes flourish to a crescendo that will wow you! During the first third of this fine cigar there is a sweet cherry hue that takes you by surprise and is very lovely to the palette. The second third of the La Palina cigars has some of the same leathery and cinnamon notes with a coffee thrown into the mix and the finish notes of espresso and cherry is the best part of the entire cigar, and there is no harshness at all! The burn throughout the smoking journey is good with no touch ups and the firm, dark ash was astounding. The aromatic flavors of the La Palina cigar produced a nice dense smoke that was truly a delight to experience.
From its humble beginning, the La Palina cigars have been cigars of excellence and quality since Samuel Paley emigrated from the Ukraine in the late 1800's and became the founder of The Congress Cigar Company. His son, Bill Paley, revived this almost forgotten brand of cigars and the skilled craftsmanship have made this line one of the most sought-after cigars in the entire world. With the smooth blend that is very well rounded and not a harsh bone in its body, cigar smoking devotees everywhere are fighting to keep them in their humidors!
The La Palina cigar line is one of elegance and quality, with a finesse that is rare in a cigar, even one which provides such a magnificent smoking experience. Smooth and delicious, these wonderful smokes are justly famous for pleasing a wide variety of palates.
Your favorite online cigar shop is sure to carry the La Palina line of cigars, so the next time you want a truly unique cigar to smoke, be sure to try one. You won’t be sorry you did. These superb cigars make great gifts for that special someone in your life who loves a stogie, and you will forever win their respect if you present them with a gift such as this.
La Sirena Cigars are a full bodied line-up, crafted by well known Miami Cigar and Company (MC&C). Known for their previous success with the Nestor Miranda Collection, their originality and superior smokes are represented once again in this line. To add to the perfection, master creator Don Jose “Pepin” Garcia had his hand in blending and producing the fine La Sirena Cigar collection. Based in Nicaragua, the My Father Cigar factory with which Don Pepin Garcia calls home has created the first stogie of this strength with this line. The high quality result that was achieved may ensure that this isn’t their last.
MC&C was founded in 1989 by Miriana and Nestor Miranda. The success of the company is evident from their launch in a one-car garage in Cuba to current sales in the millions each year. Currently headquartered in Miami, Florida they now distribute throughout the United States. Not only can their clientele expect to receive superior stogies, but MC&C takes their follow up support very seriously. They provide ongoing support to the tobacco retailers that sell and market their fine sticks. Paired with the expertise of tobacco master Don Jose “Pepin” Garcia, the results are sure to be phenomenal. Don Pepin is also based in Miami and is well known for his one of a kind, high quality blends and construction. From the early age of 11 he was gaining valuable knowledge and experience in the industry alongside his uncle. He learned the skills of rolling and was highly recognized for his talents and speed as a torcedor. After calling Nicaragua and Cuba home, Don Pepin came to Miami in 2001 and launched his very own cigar business, El Rey de los Habanos, Inc. Despite his short period of time in a leadership role, he has not wasted any time putting his name on the map by creating notable blends for major tobacco companies nationwide, including La Sirena Cigars.
Upon their 2010 debut in Chicago, La Sirena Cigars were in high demand. Named for the beautiful and mythological “mermaid” of the sea, this line of smokes is comprised of only the finest tobacco. The filler is a blend of Nicaraguan Criollo ’98 and Nicaraguan Corojo ’96, while the binder is a unique mixture of Nicaraguan Corojo and Nicaraguan Habano tobaccos. The wrapper is a dark hued Connecticut Broadleaf Maduro. Don Pepin believed Nicaraguan leaves were comparable to the fine tobacco of Habano, making them his prime selection. The line is available in five distinctive ocean inspired vitolas. including the Sea Sprite 5.5 x 42, The Prince 5 x 50, Divine 5.5 x 52, King Poseidon 6 x 60, and the Trident 7 x 50. A distinguishing trait of these superior sticks is the oversized band that encircles them. The multi-colored outfit is said to take up about two thirds of the flawless length, while not overpowering the appearance.
While there is a wide size variety of La Sirena Cigars to select from, this blend is said to not be for the casual smoker. These affordable full-bodied smokes are intense in flavor from the pre-light rituals to the flawless and satisfying draw. Flavors such as pepper and sweet cocoa emerge and keep any experienced smoking connoisseur wanting more. Both the creativity of Don Jose “Pepin” Garcia and the quality production of MC&C are represented within this one exquisite collection. And this is a collection that every aficionado should be eager to try.
The story of La Flor Dominicana cigars starts with one of tragedy, and ends with a birth of a boutique brand that keeps flourishing through the 21 century. Its founder, Litto Gomez, has been hailed as being one of the most innovative minds ever to grace the cigar world. Litto’s industrious ability to turn tragedy into triumph is a story worth noting and reflecting upon when smoking a La Flor Dominicana cigar.
Although being born in the Dominican Republic, Litto and his wife Ines lived in Miami where Litto worked his trade as a jeweler. One day he was robbed at gun point where he subsequently lost almost half a million dollars worth of jewels. After such a devastating blow, Litto decided to pack up and move back to his country where he purchased a 120 acre tobacco farm to grow tobacco for his own cigar smoking pleasure. From there Litto set out to learn everything he possibly could about the cigar business. But unlike some who chose to copy from newcomers, like himself, Litto chose to dig in and meticulously learn from the wisest in the business. This approach has earned him admiration and respect in the industry, and has given Litto the knowledge required to make an exceptionally special cigar.
La Flor Dominicana cigars were originally named Los Libertadores. When talking to Gomez, he will tell you how it took him 15 to 20 years of refining his cigar making process and how this long and diligent quest for perfection has brought the brand to where it is today. The name “La Flor” was inspired by the flower that grows on the tobacco plant when the growing process is complete and the plant is ready for production. And Litto takes his time with production. Process and control are meticulously detailed. Litto’s insistence on quality can be seen every step of the way from growth to smoke. Take the protocols in his fields for example. Each and every single one million of his tobacco plants are cleaned of suckers that grow between the leaves and stems 4 times a day prior to harvesting. The field workers also remove the flower from each plant after flowering to ensure that the leaves develop fully. Litto’s original focus was on binder and filler tobacco until 2002, when he purchased a 40 acre farm dedicated to growing Corojo and Sumatra Shade grown tobacco for wrappers.
La Flor Dominicana cigars have definitely benefited from Litto Gomez’ attention to detail, and because of the extra measures taken to insure quality, their production is limited. In fact, you cannot buy LFD in just any cigar shop. Gomez also has certain restrictions as to who can actually sell his product. He leans towards the traditional brick and mortar shops that are small enough to build strong relationships with their clientele. He is particular in the placement of his brand and how they are to be displayed, and it is not unusual to find him visiting his retailers on a regular basis. You would think after such limitations, this quest for excellence would drive up prices, but this is not the case with LFD. You do not have to spend a fortune on a La Flor Dominicana cigar like some boutique brands on the market; you just have to enjoy smoking hand-rolled perfection.
In May 2011, the Leccia Cigars Company was started by one of the more recognizable people in the industry, Sam Leccia. For a while, Sam regularly got attention from tobacco enthusiasts for his creative blends and charismatic personality. Now, after a brief hiatus from the profession, he has decided to inject his passion and knowhow back into the field. A month after announcing his return, he revealed his partnership with the Toraño family, which will serve as his distributor. The company has launched two blends, the White and the Black. Both have earned high marks from reviewers for their unique flavor profiles.
The company, though, got off to a bumpy start. Sam’s former employer, Oliva, attempted to bar him from starting his own line, asserting that he was still signed to a contract with the company. Though the two sides eventually reached a settlement, it delayed the Leccia cigars for more than a year. Also, Sam had to scrap the blend he was going to launch with initially, known as the “Debut.” Finally, in April 2013, Sam and his new partner, the Toraño family, announced the release of the Black and the White, scheduled for May 2013. This launch went as planned.
Both the White and Black feature multinational blends that each delivers a punch of flavor. They are, however, very different from one another. The White has an African sun grown wrapper with an Ecuadorian binder and fillers consisting of Nicaraguan Ligero and Pennsylvanian Seco. It comes in four vitolas, including 446 (4 x 46), 552 (5 x 52), 650 (6 x 50) and 660 (6 x 60). It is chocolate brown with a tinge of red and an oily sheen. Both of the Leccia cigars come with a band that displays the company’s logo, the letter ‘L’ in an intricate Old English typeface. The dominant flavors in the White are pepper, coffee, tobacco and spice. The pepper is the boldest taste from the outset and remains strong throughout most of the stick. The coffee is also powerful, though the tobacco and spice notes remain throughout the duration.
The Black is garnering a lot of attention for its rarely experienced tastes. Sam Leccia usually produces cigars that combine rarely seen tobaccos, and the Black uses this to great effect. It comes with an Ecuadorian Habano wrapper, a Nicaraguan Rosado binder and several fillers. These include a Dominican and Nicaraguan Ligero, a Brazilian Viso and a mysterious plant that Sam refers to only as the “Dark Fire.” The only thing known about the tobacco is that it is fire-cured before being rolled into the cigar. The wrapper is dark brown and slightly oily. As soon as it is lit, the most noticeable flavors are barbequed meat notes. It combines sweet, spicy, smoky and savory tastes right away and plays with these flavors during the entire smoke. Some reviewers also detected red pepper and cocoa in the profile.
Both of the Leccia cigars feature excellent construction, which isn’t a surprise given Sam’s background. The burn and draw are reliable and steady for both the White and Black. Most aficionados considered the White to be right around full-bodied, while the Black was closer to medium-full, which makes them perfect choices for daring novices and seasoned aficionados.
Serious Cigars has cigar Lighters of all types and sizes.Everything from small, Zippo lighters to blazing table top lighters can be found in our repertoire.Torch Flame and circular flame lighters provide windproof lighting.Elegant designs and craftsmanship make cigar lighters excellent gifts that become heirlooms and mementos for years to come.
These cigar lighters are made by the leading cigar manufacturers from around the world.They carry the logos of famous brands.Just a few of these brands include, but are not limited to, the following
Atoll has always aimed to make the very best hand-made cigar lighter in the world.Featuring fine Italian leathers and rare exotic hardwoods, these lighters are truly superb in performance and elegant in form.
If you have burned through an old Zippo, do not throw it away.You can actually keep on using it with The Blazer Zplus.This insert fits right where the old insert was and transforms your throwaway into the equivalent of a brand new cigar lighter.
X·tend Dupont cigar lighters are some of the most coveted cigar lighters in the world. They burn with a laser flame that shoots out of the top.
Lotus lighters are made with a sportive European design and state of the art manufacturing.
The Porsche cigar lighter is an example to us all that form truly follows function.The circular flame jet can operate reliably even in storm winds, while the jet flame has a piezo ignition and rib structure designed for safety
The Prometheus circular flame jet utilizes 23 merged flames to create a windproof light.The Torch Flame Prometheus will open and close automatically when you press and release the ignition button.
Table top cigar lighters made by Rocky Patel are some of the best you can buy.The Winter collection table top lighter is made to go with the winter collection cigar.
The triple torch, table top cigar lighter made by Tatuaje features a modern architectonic design that makes it truly one of a kind.Single action ignition opens the protective burner cylinder housing and ignites the flame at a perfect angle.
This fine, high quality table top cigar lighter can be your new best friend.Unlike many torch lighters that char the end of the cigar, the Burner has a quick flash light that lights without charring.A butane canister on the lighter will hold enough fluid to last for two full hours of continuous burn time.This is equivalent to an entire box of cigars.
This unique micro-torch lighter will burn with a sharp flame that is truly fantastic.It holds enough fuel to burn for a full hour.
Xikar lighters are meant to combine functionality with class and reliable use.Backed by a lifetime warranty, all Xikar cigar lighter give smokers exactly what they need at home, in the boardroom, or in the cigar lounge.In many ways, they are fire reinvented, and they represent true refinement with sense and sensibility.
Macanudo cigars are made by The General Cigar Company and are among the number one selling cigars in the United States. The Macanudo name is recognized by all cigar smoking enthusiast, and by many non cigar-smokers as well. The history of Macanudo cigars has taken generations to develop, just like the cigar itself. The origin of Macanudo begins in Jamaica, and there is not much information available about the original owners, and the infant days of the brand. In 1969, the Macanudo brand, including its factory, were purchased by the Cullman family. They were one of the first entrepreneurial families to come to America back in 1848. The Cullman’s dabbled in cigar making, but were never really successful until Joseph Jr. Cullman came up with a crazy idea. They didn’t realize that years later, with the help of his son Edgar, this idea would put Macanudo cigars in the forefront of one of the leading cigar brands in history.
The timeline is as follows:
• 1848 - Ferdinand Cullman brings his family to America and works the tobacco industry with his son Joseph Cullman.
• Through the next 100 years the Cullman family continues to work the industry with nominal success.
• Joseph Cullman’s son, Joseph Jr. comes up with a revolutionary idea to plant Havana seed in the fields of Connecticut, and the result was a complete transformation of the Cullman family’s cigars (not yet owners of Macanudo)
• Cullman’s light, distinctive Connecticut Shade wrappers gain popularity among cigar enthusiasts.
• After World War II, Yale graduate Edgar Cullman joins Cullman Bros., Inc. and goes to work on the family’s Hartford, Connecticut tobacco farm.
• Early 1940’s – Edgar Cullman goes to work for H. Anton Bock, a New York City cigar company and learns how to roll and cultivate tobacco.
• The late 1940’s- Edgar Cullman assumes control of the Connecticut wrapper operations and Florida tobacco interests.
• 1961 – Edgar Cullman buys The General Cigar Company at age 43.
• 1963 – The General Cigar Company buys its first premium brand, Gold Label.
• 1969 – The General Cigar Company buys The Temple Hall Factory in Jamaica, which included the brand Macanudo, not yet sold in the States.
• 1971 – Edgar Cullman launches Macanudo cigars into the United States with the slogan “The Ultimate Cigar”.
After launching Macanudo in 1971, Edgar Cullman purchased the US rights to Partagas from Cuba’s Cifeuntes family in 1974, and the two brands have anchored General’s premium cigar business ever since.
The Macanudo cigar line consists of five premium brand series. These include the Macanudo Robust, Macanudo Maduro, Macanudo Café, Macanudo Vintage, and Macanudo Gold. Each series has their own unique cigar names with various flavors. Macanudo still uses Connecticut Shade for its wrappers, and Jamaican and Dominican tobaccos for fillers. The origin of the binder is Mexico’s St. Andres Tuxtla Valley. Macanudos today are still being rolled by hand. The Cullman’s always emphasize the importance of an exquisitely rolled cigar with a well-rounded crown, for which Macanudo is recognized.
As of 2002, Swedish Match AB controls 64% of General Cigars; however, Cullman and his son Edgar M. Cullman Jr. manage the company. If you were to visit General Cigars today, you would see the elder Edgar Cullman in his office, probably smoking his favorite cigar, Macanudo Vintage No. IV. However, he does have his beloved pre-Castro Cubans tucked away in his humidor for special occasions. Edgar describes the cigar business as “romantic”, and surely every cigar connoisseur would absolutely agree.
AJ Fernandez is still young to be considered a legend in the tobacco industry, but with blends like his Man O War cigars, he’ll likely go down as one of the best blenders ever. Fernandez himself considers this stogie to be the best blend he’s ever created, and that’s saying a lot. The original line was such a success among aficionados that Fernandez has followed up with several more blends under the brand. These include the Armada, the Ruination, the Virtue, the Puro Authentico and the Side Projects. The original, however, remains the flagship of the brand.
All of the Man O War cigars are produced in Nicaragua at Tabacalera Fernandez. The original is a full-bodied stogie that gets much of its flavors from the wrapper. It’s an Ecuadorian Habano harvested from the viso portion of the plant. The leaves from the viso part of the plant produce more oil than any other part of the plant. This enhances the flavor and strength of the blend, but it also requires more care during the cultivation process to ensure a good product. For this reason, Fernandez oversees the fermentation process personally. This process lasts for three years. Once it is fermented, Nicaraguan fillers are rolled into it. Fernandez also oversees this part of the process, because the blend is a secret of his.
The original line is available in six vitolas, including Robusto (5 1/2 x 50), Corona (6 x 44), Torpedo (6 1/10 x 54), Toro (6 1/2 x 52), Figurado (7 1/10 x 58) and Double Corona (7 1/2 x 52).
These Man O War cigars are full bodied and full strength, but come with extremely complex flavors. These flavors consist of strong earth tones that fill out the entire smoke. The earthy flavors are backed up by nutty tastes that resemble almonds and cashews. There is a little sweetness in the profile and a strong blast of pepper on the retro-hale and finish.
If the original blend is the flagship, the Man O War Armada cigars are the super opulent luxury liner. These stogies are among the most expensive sticks on the market, but they are worth every penny. These stogies are a closely guarded Fernandez secret, but they too are aged for a long time and consist of the finest Nicaraguan tobaccos available. The blend is wrapped in an aged Ecuadorian Sumatran leaf. It is a full bodied and full strength stogie that is a harmony of vanilla, coffee, cedar, earth and several spicy flavors.
The Ruination is made for aficionados that prefer Cuban flavors. It consists of an Ecuadorian Habano wrapper and Nicaraguan and Honduran ligeros. These ligeros are cultivated from Cuban seed and allowed to ferment for years. It produces a mixture of leather, wood, oak, toast and earthy notes that are deep and rich. Like other Man O War cigars, the Ruination is full-bodied and full strength.
The Virtue is the lone mild stick in the bunch. It is draped in an Ecuadorian Connecticut wrapper and filled with Nicaraguan tobaccos. It is extremely smooth and features toast, cream, oak and nuts in the profile.
These blends are for true aficionados. Fernandez has lovingly crafted them from start to finish, turning the humble tobacco plants into works of art.
The story behind the Montecristo cigar name is an interesting one. The name Montecristo is the name of two premium cigar brands, one from Cuba and the other from the Dominican Republic. After the revolution in Cuba, Alonso Menendez and Pepe Garcia moved to the Dominican republic to regain their tobacco throne. Altadis USA is a Franco-Spanish tobacco monopoly, and the Montecristo brand is their largest cigar import to the world. They make up a huge percentage of US imports. A huge misconception of the Montecristo story is that Menedez and Garcia origionally named their cigars H. Upmann Montecristo, however the real truth is that the brand was founded by Menedez in 1935, however, it was 1937 when they purchased H. Upmann.
The brand name was inspired by Alexandre Dumas’ novel titled “The Count of Monte Cristo”. The cigar companies hired readers in the days before radios were invented. They were hired to read newspaper articles and novels to keep the cigar rollers entertained. The Count of Monte Cristo was among the favorite things the rollers liked to have read to them. This inspired Menendez to name his cigar line Montecristo Cigars.
The Montecristo cigar line began with only five sizes, and it has now grown to many more and includes premium cigars that are widely known. The Montecristo No. 4 is the most popular cigar in the world today. If you have read the novel by Dumas you can see the coincidences between the novel and the company’s history. The first five new sizes added to the line include the following; the A, Especial 1 and 2, Jolita, and the Petit Tubo. In 2004 the company released a robust sized cigar named the Edmundo, after the hero in the novel The Count of Monte Cristo, Edmund Dantes.
The Montecristo cigars logo is known around the world. It is a triangle of six swords surrounding a fleur-de-lis. The designer is John Hunter Morris who is with the brands British distributor. The bands on the cigars themselves are commonly simple by design, and they simply state the name of the cigar itself, as well as the brand name Montecristo. There is a fluer-de-lis on the bands, however the triangle of swords is only on the beautiful wooden box these masterpieces come packaged in. The designs of both the box artwork and the band artwork are elegantly simple.
When you smoke a Montecristo cigar you can be assured you will be smoking one of the very best handmade cigars in the world. They are made up of complex flavors, and they each have a special trait about them that will “Wow” you. Just as an example, the Montecristo Serie C cigar is made with a wrapper that is a Cameroon leaf, each of which are all hand picked and carefully stored to age perfectly. The company takes great pride in their line, and this is quite obvious by the great lengths they go through to ensure a great tasting, perfectly hand rolled cigar. The next time you are in your local smoke shop purchasing cigars, perhaps you will pick one of these cigars up and take yourself on an adventure, as in the book by Alexandre Dumas.
Forged from the ashes of the Great Depression, Nat Sherman Cigars have become an international staple for cigar aficionados around the world. The company’s humble beginnings started in New York City, where the titular owner began what would eventually become one of the most recognizable and sought after brands within the premium tobacco arena. This prestigious company is family owned, spanning several generations.
The Nat Sherman Cigars Sterling line offers up 5 different sized vitolas, featuring a combination of Dominican fillers and binders with a premium Ecuadorian wrapper. These stogies provide a nice, creamy smoke and are said to contain complex flavors without being too over powerful in its overall profile. Keeping with the brand’s tradition, the Sterling Line comes packaged in an elegant, but traditional slide-top cabinet box.
Their 1930 stogie line combines the tobacco fillers from Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic and offers up a now world-recognized Dominican wrapper, bearing the company’s name in deep red. The 1930 is adored for the perfect balance of the strength of the body, the flavor profile, and the tantalizing aroma. One of their richer products, the 1930 also contains a complex set of flavors that range from nutty to sweet, maintaining an overall light experience.
The company isn’t afraid of pushing boundaries, and in its search for something better, created the Nat Sherman Timeless Collection #2, rolled by the infamous Manuel Quesada. This premium stick boasts Nicaraguan, Honduran and Dominican Republic tobaccos. Reviewers say that the notes of espresso and rich cedar are only enhanced further by the hints of nutmeg and delicious dark chocolate.
The famous Metropolitan line, a nod to the company’s origins, is one of the most recognizable stogies in the world. Bearing the dark blue colors on a band of bright red, featuring a classic timepiece, the Metropolitans are known for their unique draw. The smoke has been described as sweet, yet creamy. The flavors range from a light coffee, to an earthy side, with nuttier and sweeter undertones. This medium bodied stogie has been remarked as being the embodiment of Connecticut, containing a wide array of flavors. Although the overall smoke is rather mild, it stands up fine with the body’s solid construction and perfect ash. This one-of-a-kind mix of premium, exotic flavors, yet intimate and local manufacturing has been bringing in customers to try its products for close to a century now.
It’s easy to see that Nat Sherman Cigars pride themselves on their premium line of products, which do well to set them apart from the other run-of-the-mill bargain tobaccos. This isn’t new-age thinking, but rather a classic and timeless approach to this favorite past time.
Nestor Miranda cigars are manufactured by Miami Cigar. They are a distributor that has a focus of serving the aficionado. The company began in 1989. The company started in a garage. Of course, now it is a company that is recognized worldwide. They are proud to also represent other great smokes. These are products of the La Aurora Factory in the Dominican Republic. They also own other brands aside from Nestor Miranda cigars. Some of the other brands include Tatiana, Don Lino, and Habanitos.
The founder of Nestor Miranda cigars also has the same name as the company. He came to the United States when he was sixteen years old as an immigrant from Cuba. At the time that he started Miami Cigar, he was in the liquor business. Back in Cuba, his family was not involved in the tobacco business at all. They owned a bakery. He stated that his only connection to tobacco was his own grandfather’s love of the smokes.
In 1990, he bought the La Aurora Factory that had previously only produced about ten thousand smokes. A few years later, his production was up to 12 million a year. This is quite a huge rise in a very short time for a man that had no previous experience or generational involvement in the tobacco industry. His drive is what kept him going and made him such a success. After all of this success, he finally decided that there should be a Nestor Miranda cigars line which would carry his name.
They are offered in sizes like 4 1/2 x 50, 5 1/2 x 54, 6 x 60. Those are rather huge offerings. They also went on to offer Lanceros. Cuba has these, and they are considered very exquisite. While these are difficult to make because they have a 40 gauge ring size, they also were extremely popular.
The founder of Nestor Miranda cigars knows that there is a lot of competition out there, and it is very good competition especially among the boutique companies. He spends a lot of time in shops and connecting with customers. He also spends a lot of time traveling to the various countries where his tobacco is being grown in an effort to stay involved as well as informed about all of the changes and challenges that might occur.
He also likes to give his offerings to panels to try, and afterward he asks them for their feedback. He says that he knows that while he may or may not like the product, he wants the public to like it. So, he doesn’t choose to produce a line right away. He takes the input and feedback and makes changes if they are necessary, and this too has lent itself to his success as a businessman.
While he may not come from a family that is steeped in the Cuban tobacco tradition, he has spent the last twenty plus years learning and growing a company as well as growing as a businessman and being a success for what he hopes is another twenty years more.
Successful businessman Fred Rewey established Nomad Cigars back in January 2012. The company got its start only after Rewey spent years planning it. In recent years, boutiques have taken over the tobacco industry, but most startups, even if they eventually become successful, have trouble producing a quality product out of the gate. That’s normally because young companies don’t have the production and distribution connections that better established brands possess. That isn’t a problem for Rewey, though, and his detailed planning of the company before launch ensured that the brand would hit the ground running.
Nomad Cigars has released five blends since its creation, though only four are still available through retailers. These include the Classic, the Connecticut, the C-276 and the S-307. Rewey and his team are insistent that every smoke can bring excellent blending, construction, and tobacco to the table, and at a reasonable price. The brand also takes inspiration from a number of successful mainstays in the industry, so it’s on the right track. This intense focus on quality has also won it recognition among aficionados, as its blends have consistently received high ratings from several publications. The Classic is rolled with an Ecuadorian Habano wrapper, a binder from the Dominican, and fillers from the Dominican as well. It comes in five vitolas, including the Vagabond (4 5/8 x 54), the Renegade (5 1/2 x 54), the Fugitive (5 7/8 x 64), the Navigator (6 x 52) and the Drifter (6 x 60). It is reddish brown and webbed with fine veins. Reviewers say it’s a medium bodied smoke that produces spice, cream, wood, pepper and grilled meat.
The Connecticut is made with an Ecuadorian Connecticut wrapper, an Ecuadorian Habano binder, and fillers harvested from the Dominican Republic and Nicaragua. Among its vitolas are a Robusto (5 x 50), a Robusto Gordo (5 1/2 x 54), a Toro (6 x 50) and a Lancero (7 x 38). It’s a light tan stick that’s smooth and slightly oily, and its flavors are said to include some slight pepper, cinnamon, nuts, cream, sweetness and vanilla. Overall, it is a mild medium smoke. The C-276 comes with an Ecuadorian Habano Oscuro wrapper, a Nicaraguan binder, and several Nicaraguan fillers. It’s a box pressed smoke that comes in a Robusto (5 x 50), a Corona (5 1/2 x 44), a Torpedo (6 x 52), a Toro Grande (6 x 58) and a Toro (6 x 60). It is the color of milk chocolate and produces flavors of toast, cocoa, cedar, pepper, grapes, soy, sunflower seeds and earth. The reviewers said that it’s an interesting flavor mix, to be sure.
The S-307 is adorned with an Ecuadorian Sumatran wrapper, an Ecuadorian Habano binder, and Nicaraguan fillers. It is produced in three formats, including a Robusto (5 x 50), a Toro (6 x 50) and a Torpedo (6 1/2 x 52). It’s a rosy brown color and extremely smooth. It evokes notes of earth, pepper, walnut, baker’s spice and raisin notes, and is said to be a nice medium bodied smoke throughout.
All four blends that Nomad Cigars has released have been hits, and with Rewey’s obsession with perfection, it appears to be only the beginning for the young upstart.
Oliveros cigars have been in production for about eleven years under the direction of Rafael Nodal, Dr. Alina Nodal, and Hank Bischoff. With ancestral roots that date back generations to both Spain and Cuba, these families know what tobacco is all about. They have combined their familiar backgrounds to create some wonderful offerings in the industry today.
Today, the family offers a line of flavored smokes in the Oliveros cigars line. It is possible to find their honey and vanilla offerings as well as peach, chocolate, cherry, Irish cream, cappuccino, amaretto, cognac, Cuban mojito, vodka cranberry, mango margarita, and apple martini. Others such as their short lady or corona pequena offer combinations of flavors such as the bolero that features rum, mango, papaya, guava, and sugar cane. Other great combination flavors include vanilla beans, cherry extract, and tropical honey combined to give a rich bold taste in the mambo smoke. Rumba smokes include coconut milk, passion fruit, and sugar cane for the aficionado’s enjoyment. The cha cha cha line includes roasted cocoa beans, vanilla extract, and Spanish red wine. These all have Dominican binders, Indonesian wrappers, and Dominican and Nicaraguan fillers.
Oliveros cigars feature a different type of smoke and flavor that might not be found just anywhere else. It is possible to enjoy the rich way that they use the signature flavors of red wine, molasses, and honey to create a flavor sensation that isn’t found in other types of sticks.
Oliveros cigars also offer other lines such as the sun grown reserve, premium hd, black knight, king havano, eight zero, platinum series, gold series, and kopi luwak.
One reviewer offered his review on the king havano, one of the many offerings from Oliveros cigars. This particular smoke offers an Oscuro wrapper, Nicaraguan binder and Nicaraguan Ligero filler from Esteli, Nicaragua.
He said that the wrapper was extremely clean and smooth as well as having a sweet aroma. The flavor was that of a delicious coffee taste with an earthy background note that was noticeable and a hint of spice being detected as well. Mocha would come through from time to time with the taste being very prevalent for a while and then would fall off for a while. The overall profile was rated as being very rewarding and a mild to moderate type of smoke.
All of the reviews by various different aficionados in the industry have been extremely favorable of all of the lines that these two families have offered. Most are rated as being excellent. The Nicaraguan blends that are offed are rated as the best in the business.
The great blend of tobaccos done with the expertise and know-how that reaches back three generations to the very roots of tobacco growing in Cuba makes for the wonderful different types of smokes that are offered by this company.
With so many different premium blends and flavored blends, even the most discerning aficionado is sure to find one line that will please their flavor palate and expectations of a great smoke.
Ortega cigars has held a rich history to its name despite being founded in just early 2010, with its line of products that bear the company’s name being lauded by many critics and online reviewers alike. The company’s founder, Eddie, who shares his last name with the company, has created quite a stir in the industry in a short period of time by manufacturing high-quality stogies that seem to be uncompromising in both their ingredients and their masterful build.
Some of those ingredients and raw materials hail from some of the finest growing areas in Central and South America. Ortega cigars have specifically honed in on Nicaragua for the majority of its high-quality materials, with their wrappers being rolled in the actual city of Esteli, Nicaragua. Touting a proprietary curing process for their products, Eddie insists this gives each release an individual character.
Though the company hasn’t been around for a particularly long amount of time, the high quality of the sticks that have been unleashed by Eddie and company destroy any pre-conceived notions that critics would hold otherwise. There are currently three separate lines of stogies that the company produces, each of which has many different sizes and variations to choose from.
The first line of Ortega cigars is the Serie D. Reviewers are unanimous in saying that the look and feel of this particular product has a very minimalist approach in regards to adorning the wrapper and filler. The Serie D stogies have a very and shiny wrapper with some fairly prominent veins, while the caramel flavor that runs throughout the length of the body compliments the smooth aroma that is given off pre-light. Flavor-wise, the Serie D line boasts strong peppery notes throughout, accompanying a strong spice as well. These flavors are said to eventually evolve into some earthy and nutty notes during the burn, while a smooth and cool smoke finishes off the burn.
Another line of stogies that follows in the footsteps of their previous release, the Wild Bunch has also seen critical acclaim for its bold flavors and even bolder design. Deciding not to hold anything back in the construction of this particular stogie, it consists of a very oily, reddish hued wrapper that catches the eye immediately. The wrapper has been noted as being particularly thick, with many veins and raised indentions throughout the body. Ortega cigars have created a myriad of flavors throughout the many phases of the burn in this stogie, with many reviewers noting the long-lasting nutty and woody flavors that meander during the duration of the burn.
The final line of stogies that the company has yet to begin production on has an interesting story behind it. The name of the line is Brotherhood and seeks to partition 50% of all of the total sales of the line to the American Heroes foundation, which seeks to aid charities that support soldiers that have served and may be showing symptoms of PTSD, or post-traumatic stress disorder. Ortega cigars haven’t released a lot of information regarding the actual specifics of the stogie yet, other than some small tidbits including the above. However, a strong tobacco flavor is promised, along with the same high-quality Nicaraguan ingredients that aficionados have come to expect from this company.
Padilla cigars are considered a boutique tobacco production company. Boutique refers to a company that offers their product, whatever it may be, on a limited basis. The reasoning behind this is to focus on quality and not so much on quantity. One way that this company has achieved this is through using only the rarest blends of Cuban seed tobaccos in each blend of sticks.
The company turned to the experts in the industry to gain the knowledge that they needed to form the very successful Padilla cigars. In the beginning, their products were produced at other factories. In 2008 Ernesto Padilla opened his own factory in Little Havana.
Of course, Ernesto Padilla also had some special smaller tobacco crops that he wanted to use. Padilla cigars created and offered these very special limited edition smokes: Edición Especial en Cedro, Edición Especial Obsidian and Edición Especial Achilles.
This company earned a high rating on their very first offering and has been going full steam ahead ever since. The owner of the company has been said to be one of the best tobacco blenders in the world. This is a very impressive title.
Ernesto was born in Cuba but was allowed to leave with his mother to come to the United States. He majored in graphic arts while he was in college. He pursued a career in that field which is how he ended up working with tobacco. His entire family had been steeped in tobacco tradition so it was not too hard to understand how he came to be a vital part of this industry.
Now it seems that everyone in the industry has come to know and love Padilla cigars. The reviews are always favorable and highly rated. This is quite a feat in an industry that is so competitive and saturated with makers. However, quality cannot be competed with, and therefore this company easily shines above all of the rest.
As Ernesto continues to realize that the finest tobacco leaves deserve to be carefully constructed into fine smokes, he will continue to make a mark on the industry. Quality tobacco and quality hand rolling techniques from this established company helps to make for some of the best tobacco products on the market today.
As time marches forward and the tobaccos that he is producing continue to become richer and fuller of flavor and complexity, it is not much of a stretch to see that he will continue to rise above all of the competitors in the industry. As he continues to find new blends to mix together along with innovative ways to roll the choice leaves that are hand-picked, there is no doubt that the popularity of the lines, old and new, will continue an upward trend. Quality is a rare gem in a mountain of normalcy, and this company definitely has this down to an art.
Padrón Cigars (a.k.a. Piloto Cigars) was founded in 1968 by Cuban born refugee José Orlando Padrón. Although the Padrón cigar brand itself started in the 60’s, the Padrón family has been working in the tobacco industry since the 1850’s. José Padrón’s grandfather, Demas Padrón, immigrated to Cuba in the mid 1800’s from the Canary Islands. Back then, it was standard that all Islanders were required to work in the tobacco fields for very little money per day. The Padrón’s stashed away their earnings and after many years of saving, they purchased their first tobacco farm in Los Obos, Cuba. They continued to buy farms, including a factory in Piloto, hence the name of the Padrón alias, Piloto Cigars.
José was born and raised on a tobacco farm. One could just picture him swaddled in fresh Cuban seed tobacco leaves! In 1961, at age 35, he moved from Cuba shortly after the Revolution when Fidel Castro nationalized his tobacco farm. When he finally settled in Miami, he was making a mere $60 a month that he received from the Cuban government to aid refugees. At a time when José was starving and virtually penniless, his fate changed with one present from a friend, a hammer. This gift allowed José to become a carpenter and build up a savings of $600 to start the Padrón cigar brand that we all know and love today. The small hammer on the Padrón label is symbolic of this event that changed the life of José, from immigrant, to carpenter, to the most well known Nicaraguan cigar blender and manufacturer in the United States.
But José’s struggles do not stop there. Padrón cigars have persevered through many ups and downs in the cigar industry, as well as, hurricanes and fires destroying his crops in Nicaragua and four bombings to his shop in Little Havana. The bombings occurred after anti-Castro extremists saw a publication of a photo revealing José handing Castro one of his cigars. José was actually there to negotiate the release of hundreds of Cuban prisoners, however the photo never allowed for the real facts of the meeting, so it made the two look like old pals. Boycots broke out in Miami, and fires were lit on his crops, but all this turmoil could not stop José’s dedication.
Today Padrón cigars have exceeded sales of over 150 million. However their focus is on quality and not quantity and the Padrón family, including grandchildren are now working together to keep this great tradition in cigar smoking alive.
• 1926 Series: No.9 in “25 Best Cigars of 2007” by Cigar Aficionado
• 1926 40th Anniversary Series: “25 Best Cigars of 2004” by Cigar Aficionado
• Padrón Thousand Series received sixty one ratings, none being under 88 with the highest at 94
• Padrón 1964 Anniversary blend has received sixty two ratings from 20 to 97 on a 100 point scale
• Padrón 1926 Series has received twenty seven ratings from 90 to 97
• Padrón 1964 Anniversary “A”: rated 91 twice
Para Ti cigarsare produced at a small factory located in Santiago in the Dominican Republic. Fred Schrader of Schrader Cellars in California offered the premiere of his cigar, which is called the Schrader Hispaniola. Because the factory is small and quaint, it allows Mr. Schrader to be openly enmeshed with the blending and manufacturing processes. This gives him the peace of mind to know that each cigar rises up to meet his personal tough standard of operational excellence. They were made available as vintages only beginning in 2010.
The Para Ti cigars combine the finest Dominican fillers and a binder of Dominican Criollo, and they are completed with a wrapper of Honduran Habana. They are each hand-rolled and only produced in limited quantities. They are packed in a small wooden box that strongly resembles a casket and are available in boxes of ten. They deliver a defined equilibrium, as well as superb precision.
The Para Ti cigar line is composed of Puros from the Dominican Republic. These are available in a variety of sizes including: Prominentes 6X60, Canonazos 6X48, Hermosos 5.5X42 and Perlas 5X40.
Those reviewing the Para Ti cigars say that the appearance is that of an oily brown wrapper, with veins that are quite pronounced. They go on to describe the triple cap, and the easily recognized band. It is described as being well filled, without soft spots or any squishiness when held. The burn is said to have some minor wandering, but no correction is necessary, and the ash is very firm and white, with flecks of gray.
The flavor is definitely spicy, which is unusual for a Dominican cigar. Tobacco flavoring is very prominent in the first third or so. The flavor hints of leather and delightful notes of Brazil nut. The last section really picks up in the flavor department as you begin to detect cinnamon tastes, as well as an earthy leather undertone. There is also a delightful hint of citrus coming through. They start out being medium bodied, but round out to being full bodied by the end of the smoke. Most reviewers rate this as a great stick to add into their rotation.
Those who reviewed the Para Ti cigars proclaimed them to be a very good stick. Because of their limited release, they will probably be very hard to find, but the reviewers all say that it is definitely worth the search to find this exquisite line that is off the beaten path from the normal Dominican offering. Labeled a boutique cigar because of its unique flavor offerings as well as its vintage release, it could quickly become an extremely sought after commodity. And this is true for the casual smoker, aficionado or self-professed connoisseur alike. This means it could easily be a must have for the smoker that wants their humidor to have the very best of offerings. Those who have reviewed it have said that the price may keep some people away, but how can you put a price on a smoke as wonderful as this?
The history of Partagas Cigars dates back as early as 1845 making it one of the oldest existing brands of cigars. Originally from Spain, Jaime Partagas founded his own cigar company and factory in Havana, Cuba after many years of working in the tobacco industry. His ownership in a number of premiere plantations in Cuba enabled him access to some of the best tobacco in the region, which ultimately helped the Partagas Cigar brand grow and succeed. In addition, Jaime was also known for bringing in lectors to read and entertain his cigar rollers.
Following Jaime Partagas’s death by possible murder the factory and brand changed hands a number of times, but it was Ramon Cifuentes and his father that paved the way for what the brand is today. Success didn’t come without obstacles however. At a point when Partagas Cigars was a leader in the industry in Cuba and around the world, Ramon was required to flee the country due to Fidel Castro’s harsh control of the government. It wasn’t until seventeen years later, in the Dominican Republic that he was capable of producing his premium cigars once again. While the factory in Havana was eventually taken over by a government owned tobacco company, Ramon sold the Partagas name to the General Cigar Company in 1978, reviving the brand and jump starting a rewarding path for it in the American market. After a short period of time in Jamaica, the production process was brought to Santiago. Today, the Partagas name is still used to represent the two separate companies. The Havana factory, which is also known as the Francisco Perez German Factory, continues to be accountable for a high level of the brand’s production and is a must-see landmark for many cigar smokers annually. General Cigar set itself apart by introducing a red and gold band design, with the year “1845” replacing the original “Habana” on the packaging.
The Partagas Cigar stands out in every cigar shop for what it’s most famously known for, their exceptional wrapper leaves. Ramon Cifuentes discovered that the elite leaves were not to be found in Cuba, but in the African country of Cameroon. The sub-tropical weather offers the ultimate environment for growing amazingly rich wrapper leaves. The strong, yet not overpowering flavor of the leaves as well as the incredible character of each cigar keeps it closely rooted to its Cuban history.
Partagas Cigars offers a wide range of cigar options for many different smoking tastes. The Benji Master Series is available in one size and has a medium spicy flavor, while the Partagas Black Label is an extremely full bodied cigar available in nine various vitolas. The Partagas Classic is a medium to full strength smoke, whereas the Partagas LR Decadas 2007, Partagas LR Decadas 2008 and Partagas LR Decadas 2009 provide a smooth and medium experience with San Agustin Hon binders. The Partagas Serie S is also a medium to full strength cigar that is available in a Natural wrapper. Lastly, the Partagas Spanish Rosado sports a Connecticut Broadleaf binder and presents a medium to full strength with some added spice.
With its history as rich as its flavor, Partagas Cigars is a definite necessity in every cigar smoker’s humidor.
For those seeking to be in good standing among some of the world’s most elite and influential people, smoking Paul Garmirian cigars is just one way to instantly gain their respect. Paul Garmirian cigars have been pleasing world leaders and the socially elite for two decades. And they continue to rank high among aficionados worldwide. From Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, to Arnold Schwarzenegger and David Letterman, these hard hitting politicians and celebrities give their nod to some of the most incredible cigars ever made.
Perhaps one of the most interesting details about the Garmirian brand is the story of how the line actually came about. Paul Garmirian was born in Lebanon and eventually settled in the United States, earning his PhD cum laude in International Politics from the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. Little did anyone know, his stint in Washington would eventually foreshadow the many devoted cigar enthusiasts that would eventually enjoy his offerings, in addition, he served as a professor of Politics and International Marketing, and effectively ran his own real estate firm in Virginia until 1990.
After dabbling in cigar smokingfor forty years, Paul Garmirian set off on a journey to write a complete guide to cigar smoking, which would entail seven years of research and two years of writing. This comprehensive book, The Gourmet Guide to Cigars, serves as a handbook for enjoying cigars and understanding the art behind them. It has been reprinted nine times and was translated into Spanish in 1993.
This journey of research put Paul Garmirian in contact with many powerhouses in the industry, including Hendrik Kelner, who is the president of Tabacos Dominicanos. The two began testing different blends of tobaccos and eventually came up with the perfect recipe for the new Paul Garmirian cigars, which was un-veiled in Washington, D.C. in November of 1990. This line of cigars started with six sizes and has since expanded to include twenty-one sizes. From there, other Paul Garmirian cigars have been born, including the Paul Garmirian Gourmet Series II, the Reserva Exclusiva, the 15th Anniversary Celebration, and the Symphony 20.
Paul Garmirian stands out as extraordinary in comparison to other cigar makers because he strictly monitors and selects the shops that are allowed to carry his brand. In addition, Paul Garmirian cigars cannot be found in magazines to order, nor can they be purchased wholesale. This in turn makes them more valuable and treasured, especially when one of these cigars is in an aficionados possession.
Furthermore, there are an undisclosed number of perfectly aged cigars tucked away in the rafters of his warehouse, which have been patiently aging for over five years. Each of these cigars are personally signed and dated in the year they were made by Paul Garmirian. This line of cigars is referred to as either the Paul Garmirian Signature Series or the Paul Garmirian Family Aged Series, and is not included in his traditional price sheet. In fact, only Paul Garmirian knows exactly which cigars are aging, as he does not disclose their identities until he decides it is time to sell them in person. Thus, it is no wonder that this brand is so highly rated and exclusive.
The founder of the globally recognized and acclaimed Tropical Tobacco also proudly produces Pedro Martin Cigars. This blend of smokes will arouse your palate, and keep you coming back for more.
He began this adventure while working for his father in his father’s factory in Cuba in 1936 at the tender age of fifteen years old. He had worked in the family tobacco fields weeding and looking after plants from early childhood. The family company was responsible for a line called El Veguero at the time. They also were responsible for the Commandos cigar that was popular with American army men during World War II.
The family had gone on to create the Tabacalera Martín in 1950 while still in Cuba. However, because the government of Cuba had seized control of tobacco production, the family was forced to move to the United States. Settling in Detroit, Michigan in 1961, the founder began a career as a blender. Companies, at that time in the United States, were trying to find a replacement for Cuban tobacco because of the Cuban embargo.
The founder opened his factory, Tropical Tobacco, in 1974. Solo Aromas, Particulares, Cacique, Maya, and V Centennial are some of the first offerings of brands that Pedro Martin cigars were known for making. They were first made in Nicaragua, Honduras, and the Dominican Republic.
Thirty years later, he sold Tropical Tobacco to Eduardo Fernandez’s Aganorsa in 2002. However, he assisted by staying on as a trainer for tobacco blenders and tobacco rollers. He also acted a leaf broker for the company. His expertise was sought after, so, therefore, he remained to lend his knowledge, know-how, and experience to the company.
Tropical Tobacco remains on the forefront, and offers lines such as Illusione and Casa Fernandez. The tobacco still comes from Aganorsa.
Pedro Martin cigars began as a labor of love for the founder. He fully believed in the quality of the leaf, the masterfully created blend, and the perfection of the very best tobacco. His legacy lives on in all of the namesake products that are available today.
He died in 2010 at the age of eighty-nine. He leaves behind many friends and family. His daughter, Maria, has taken over the family business, and created a new line. This Family of Cigars is the new line. Some of the new offerings of Pedro Martin cigars are:
Ruby: A stick wrapped in a Maroon Corojo wrapper, and made with Nicaraguan Leaf. It features just a hint of spice.
Corojo: A fully blended smoke that offers a Corojo wrapper, binder, and filler. This one is very strong with bold flavors.
Martin Gold: Sporting an Ecuadorian-Connecticut wrapper, this medium bodied sample is smooth because it is blended so well.
These smokes are actually blends that he blended himself before his death. So in so many ways, Maria has everything that she needs to ensure that the brand and the legend of Pedro Martin cigars live on for generations to come. That’s good news for the many aficionados who rave about the great blend and taste of this smoke.
Perdomo cigars are a third generation legacy company that can be traced back to Silvio Perdomo in San Jose de las Lajas, Cuba. Silvio was a cigar roller for several companies until his imprisonment after the Cuban revolution in 1959. Silvio Perdomo was held captive in harsh conditions for three years, then for the next twelve years he was held at La Cabana and four other facilities, as an enemy of Fidel Castro. Silvio was allowed to immigrate to the United States in 1974. His son Nick Sr. whom followed in his cigar rolling footsteps, was also against the communism and was shot twice, to later leave a hospital on a gurney, escaping execution. After recovering through the kindness and help of a friend, nick Sr. immigrated to the United States. Nick was able to do so with a sponsorship through the Catholic Church, he settled in Washington DC. Only to fight poverty working as a janitor for a mental institution for a meager $11 per week, Nick Perdomo Sr. and his family relocated to Miami, Florida in 1976.
Nick Perdomo Jr. bound to follow in his grandfather’s and father’s footsteps launched a home based business, after completing time in the United States Navy. Nick Jr. was working as an air traffic controller during the day, and was working with his wife in the evenings launching Perdomo Cigarsout of his garage. In August 1992 the beginnings of what is widely known today as Tobacalera Perdomo was born, the new company name is Nick’s Cigar Company.
Today Perdomo’s manufacturing is in an impressive 88,000 square foot facility, the second largest in Esteli Nicaragua. The facility is often referred to as “El Monstro” (the monster), Nick Perdomo Jr. serves as the President grooming his son to be heir to this magnificent and humble company.
Today the Perdomo Cigar is considered to be one of the best in the world in flavor and in price. I find the history of these cigars to be quite intriguing. When other cigar company’s raised their price, Nick Perdomo Jr. lowered the price of his Perdomo Cigars, stating that the quality will be the same. He is noted saying he wants cigar lovers to be able to afford his cigars despite the economy or the tax increases on tobacco. The Perdomo Cigar Line includes the following cigars…
As you can see this once garage based business has become a legacy to be carried on for many years to come. The Perdomo Cigar will be passed on for so many more generations. It is amazing to know such fine flavor and superb effort can transform into one of the best hand rolled cigars in the world. I am honored to smoke these amazing cigars.
Perla Del Mar cigars were first shown at the 2012 IPCPR Trade Show, and have just recently made it to retailers. This stick was created by the J.C. Newman Cigar Company, and deviates from their traditional offerings. Unlike others J.C. Newman sticks, this stogie is a mild experience, though it still maintains the range of flavors that smokers have come to expect from the brand. The name is Spanish for “pearl of the sea.” It was inspired by an old Cuban stick that featured the same name and artwork, and Newman believed it would make a good fit with this blend.
This stogie comes with a rarely seen Ecuadorian Connecticut Shade wrapper that is box pressed for exquisite flavor. Nicaraguan tobacco is used in both the binder and fillers. Perla Del Mar cigars use several Nicaraguan tobaccos, derived from Pueblo Nuevo, Condega, Jalapa and La Reina. The stick is produced in Esteli, Nicaragua at the Fabrica de Tabacos San Rafael factory.
It comes in four vitolas, including P (3 3/4 x 56), M (4 3/4 x 52), G (6 1/4 x 54) and TG (6 x 60). They are available in boxes of 25 each, except for the P, which come in boxes of 28. The wrapper is light brown and feels silky in the hand. There are some veins present, though the seams are disguised well. The band is navy blue, gold, white and black. In the center of the band, a black and white clipper ship is in full sail. The name of the stick is under the ship in gold lettering, and the top features a gold and blue shield. Gray ribbons wrap around the shield from either side. The word “tobaccos” is on the left ribbon and the word “superiores” on the right ribbon.
The first third of the Perla Del Mar cigars is said to be an interesting mix of pepper, cream and citrus. The cream quickly fades into the background while the citrus and pepper alternate as dominant flavors. With the touch of a torch lighter, the stick, a wood note joins the profile. Right before the first third ends, the cream fades out completely. In the second third of the stogie, most reviewers agree that the most apparent flavors are wood, citrus and pepper. The pepper remains strong, though the citrus and wood jockey back and forth for second fiddle. In the final third of the Perla Del Mar cigars, the citrus, pepper and wood are still the major notes. Some aficionados also detected vanilla and spice near the end of the stogie, but it doesn’t finish harsh.
The nub is firm and slightly warm. Newman puts an emphasis on construction, and this is reflected in the Perla Del Mar cigars. The burn only requires a couple of touch-ups along the way and the draw is ideal. The ash is salt and pepper and holds firm, with only slight flaking.
Like most other Connecticut Shades, this stick starts out mild in strength and pushes into medium territory around halfway through. The flavors, though, are robust and this makes the stogie medium-bodied to begin with. Most aficionados believe that it goes full-bodied shortly before finishing.
Abraham Flores and Juan Rodriguez combined forces to create Pinar Del Rio cigars. Some of their most popular offerings include the Top Shelf Signature Select, the Flor de Cesar, and Devils Weed. They are manufactured using hand-picked tobaccos from the Dominican Republic and Nicaragua and are combined to introduce aficionados to a unique smoking experience, leaving them looking for the next opportunity to indulge in one of these gems.
Pinar Del Rio cigars come in four popular sizes: The Robusto at 50 x 5, the Toro at 50 x 6, the Torpedo at 52 x 6.5, and the Churchill at 50 x 7. This size selection ensures the satisfaction of a wider array of potential enthusiasts. In addition, each size retains the consistency and excellence associated with the manufacturer.
Upon first glance these stogies are exceptionally presented, with a rich color and nice oily sheen. The color stays consistent from foot to head, with only a few variations. There are a few healthy veins, but they do not protrude or leave a bumpy feel to the touch. No soft spots are evident while rolling the stick firmly between the fingers. The aroma is akin to a mellow damp earth with a bit more emphasis at the foot rather than the head. Reviewers have stated that the pre light draw is smooth and tasty.
The first third of Pinar Del Rio cigars is comfortable and even, with thick plumes of white smoke being produced from the nice burn. Reviewers claim that the first couple of puffs are a bit light and airy, but within a few more, the thickness and robust body comes through rather nicely. This is definitely a medium-bodied cigar with a spiciness that is a bit sharp. The reviewers stated that the transition between the first and second third mellows the spiciness quite a bit.
Flavors of oak and rich mocha espresso have been noted, providing a delicious combination with the natural taste of the tobacco leaves. The draw remains steady, and the white smoke plumes are pleasing for the smoker, ensuring a positive experience.
The second third finds a complexity in the taste sensations experienced. Dark chocolate and coffee provide a sweet yet slightly bitter note to compliment the earthy flavors of the first third. This sweet bitterness has been said to actually accentuate the flavors of the tobacco in the Pinar Del Rio cigars.
The final third introduces the aficionado to a bit more of the mellowed spice experienced earlier on. The woodsy flavors now accent the natural taste of the tobacco. The palate has a delightful experience thanks to the mocha flavors that linger behind. The draw remains outstanding with an evenness and consistency that appeals to every aficionado.
Pinar Del Rio cigars are an experience to be appreciated when one has plenty of time. Sit back, relax, light up that cigar and enjoy, because these offerings last for almost two hours depending on the size. The affordable price helps guarantee that these cigars will continue to be appreciated by many in the years to come.
PIO VI cigarsare a robust, boutique blend of cigars. They are hand rolled cigars and made with the finest tobacco available in unique blends. PIO VI cigars are offered in a variety of blends and sizes. The Classic PIO VI cigar is the original boutique blend, and there are only 1000 boxes produced each month. The Overture Series 1996 was created and released to commemorate the original Classic line released in 1996. These were a limited release production with only 600 boxes produced. The Resurrection was released in 2009.
Alberto J. Medina is the master behind the PIO VI cigar. Even after a lengthy legal battle that almost took everything he had, he persevered, and continues to blend these masterful cigars. Someone had taken his brand name PIO and it's popularity and used it to their advantage, but when Alberto found this out, he took legal action and finally won back the rights to his PIO name. Upon its first release, this smoke received an excellent rating by Cigar Aficionado. That is a rating most cigars dream of and only the finest achieve, and usually after years and years of production. This only proves the excellence in the craftsmanship of these cigars. He started out in a small cigar shop in Miami's Little Havana district in 1996. After the legal battle was over, he resurrected his business and launched the PIO Resurrection Box Press Limited Edition in 2009. It was a line that was launched and named after the sacrifices he had to make for his much loved cigars. His success story also proves that it doesn't require having a lengthy family lineage in cigars to have a successful business. It does however require the love of what you do and the talent to achieve it.
The PIO VI Overture Series 1996 was the release to commemorate the original 1996 release of the PIO VI Classic. Its blend differed slightly from the original, using a filler made from Nicaraguan, Brazillian, and Dominican Republic tobaccos. It is offered in Corona, Torpedo, Robusto, Churchill and No.3 sizes. It would be considered a medium to full body cigar. Taking a look at one of these masterpieces, the wrapper is a dark brown with minimal veins. The draw is flawless from the start. The burn starts off great and then gets a bit wobbly. Yet it corrects itself quickly and then finishes straight. This cigar starts off mild, but by the middle it's complexity ramps up and it becomes a medium body to almost full body smoke. Its primary flavors are of sweetness, nuts, and leather. There is a spiciness that blends itself nicely towards the end.
The latest line of PIO VI cigars is the Resurrection line. These are box pressed cigars, which, many cigar smokers would agree, add a robust flavor to any cigar. They are offered in Churchill, Torpedo and Robusto sizes. The filler in these are made from Nicaragua and Mexico tobaccos. The wrapper is a dark chocolate color with minimal veins. For a Maduro wrapper, there is very little oiliness. It is a solid feeling cigar with no soft spots. The draw is perfect and the burn was fairly even throughout the smoke. The ash was a dark gray and held tight the entire time. This is also a complex smoke, with primary flavors of coffee and toasted nuts.
The Punch Cigar actually has a funny beginning, and probably unlike any other in the cigar world. Any of the Punch Cigars are exactly that, a good punch of a cigar, but that is not how they got their name. These cigars come in quite a litany of sizes, fifteen in fact. From the Bolos size of 4.1875 inches x 36 ring guage, to the Champion size 4.5 x 60, to the Presidente 8.5 x 52. They are also offered in a variety of wrappers. Depending on the size will depend on what's offered, there is Ecuadorian Sumatra, Maduro, Double Maduro, EMS, and Colorado Maduro.
Punch Cigars are produced by General Cigar in Honduras, but this is not where they started. This brand is among the few that have been around for well over one hundred years. It is a brand that has proven, over and over, to be time withstanding. It began in the 1840's with Manuel Lopez in Cuba. He was wanting to attract the British cigar market, which was booming, and came up with the Punch Cigar brand. He called them Punch after Mr. Punch in the Punch and Judy puppet show. It was a very popular show overseas that can trace its roots back to the 1600's. The first printed script that was produced for the Punch and Judy Show was in 1828. In fact, our first President, George Washington was said to have seen this show while he was in Paris. The brand became extremely successful in Great Britain. When Manuel retired in 1924, he gave the ownership of the brand over to Esperanza Valle Comas. Two acquisitions later, it was purchased by Villazon Company in Honduras. The brand was first imported from Honduras in 1969. In 1997, General Cigar, now General Cigar/ Swedish Match, purchased the leading Honduran cigar maker. Punch cigars continue to be hand-rolled in Honduras for the American market. The bands on these smokes still bear Manuel Lopez's name, while the lithographed boxes show a comical depiction of Mr. Punch enjoying a cigar.
The Double Corona comes in a size of 6.75 x 48. It has a dark brown wrapper that is a bit rough looking with a nice oily sheen. The draw is easy and the burn is even. The ash is a light gray color and it produces a fair amount of smoke. At the beginning of the smoke, there is a definite wood and earth taste with hints of honey. That stays consistent until the end, where there are notes of citrus. These tend to be on the full body side and would be better appreciated by a seasoned cigar aficionado. Some time in your humidor will also enhance the full body flavor of these smokes.
The Cafe Royale size is 5.625 x 45. This is a rough looking cigar as well, with its dark tan wrapper. It has minimal veins and a nice oiliness to it. The draw is on the looser side, and the burn is straight. The flavor, as a whole on this cigar, is of a dark chocolate. There are definite woody and coffee notes with a touch of pepper towards the end. This would be a good choice for a novice cigar smoker. Rest assured that you will be pleased, no matter which Punch Cigar you choose.
Please contact us at 866-37CIGAR to order these Cigars
The 5th generation of the Quesada family has introduced Quesada Tributo cigars to the world as a tribute to their ancestors. Created with love and remembrance, Quesada Tributo cigars represent a tobacco legacy that has molded and shaped this Empire into what it is today. This is truly a very special cigar.
Quesada Tributo cigars represent the start of a new era for the Quesada 5th Generation. Quesada is seeing huge opportunities opening up in his business as his production has more than tripled during the past five years. Events on the horizon include the emergence of the a manufactured brand, Romeo y Julieta, into the empire of Tabacalera, the Spanish tobacco giant. The brand gives Tabacalera an entry into the U.S. market for the first time. This manufacturer has also started a joint venture with Mike’s Cigars of Miami and J. R. Tobacco to manufacture new brands in a new factory. Quesada has an ongoing commitment to growth and quality for his tobacco enterprise, and with Quesada Tributo cigars opening a new chapter for a new generation of tobacco blenders, this is sure to be an exciting journey for a family that has come so far in the cigar business.
The Quesada Tributo brand was made by Manuel Quesada and his team of daughters, nephews, and nieces, who are known as the “Fifth Generation”. these cigars come out of MATASA (manufactura de Tabacos S.A.) in Santiago. Unlike other cigar manufacturers who have been involved in multi-million dollar purchases, building enormous factories, Manuel has taken a quieter approach to building his business.
During the first beginnings of the cigar renaissance in 1992, MATASA and Quesada were among the founding members of Pro-Cigar, an organization established to promote Dominican cigars. Today Pro-Cigar is a consortium of some of the finest cigar manufacturers in the world who have been instrumental in putting the Dominican Republic on the map as “Cigar Country”
Manuel Quesada started in the family enterprise at the age of 13 in Cuba. He came from a family of leaf brokers who became one of the major exporters of Cuban tobacco to the world market, although they journeyed from humble beginnings. Quesada’s great-grandfather came to Cuba from Spain with his family as bakers. The bakery proved too small for him and his brother, who were the last to come to Cuba. When a debt to the family was paid with tobacco, the family told the two youngest brothers to take the payment and turn it into a livelihood. That is just what they did by starting their leaf purchasing company in Cuba together. In 1960, they were forced into exile, transferring their entire business to the Dominican Republic, where they had been buying and selling tobacco for years. It was in the Dominican Republic that the Quesada family began manufacturing cigars, slowly making their way into the forefront of the tobacco industry.
To quote Quesada, “For many years we have carried heavy hearts missing those we have lost, but now that burden is lifted and we are ready to celebrate their lives through this cigar and this Tributo.”
Tributo cigars…”It’s more than just a new cigar, It’s our family!”
Regius cigars has been a mainstay in the United Kingdom for a short time, and now they’re making their play for a U.S. audience. The company is owned by Akhil Kapacee and was established about four years ago. Two years ago, it expanded its operations to the U.S., but hadn’t yet released a blend for U.S. smokers specifically. As any aficionado can tell you, Europeans and Americans expect certain things from their stogies, so it was a conspicuous absence from the company’s portfolio. That figures to change with the Exclusivo U.S.A blend, as it is made with the American aficionado in mind.
Debuted in May 2014 at an event in the Chicago area, the Exclusivo U.S.A. was only available in small numbers at first. Growing demand, though, has pushed the company into ramping up its production, and it is now available throughout the country. It’s a Nicaraguan puro, with a wrapper from Jalapa, and an interesting filler grown in Ometepe. It’s interesting because it is harvested from volcanic soil, imparting some unusual flavors into the blend.
The Regius Exclusivo U.S.A. cigars are produced in four sizes, including a Fat Perfecto (5 3/4 x 60), a Pressed Perfecto (6 1/2 x 54), a Toro Extra (6 1/2 x 56) and a Lancero Extra (7 1/2 x 42). It is the color of dark coffee and is covered in a sheen of oil. It’s also rather smooth in appearance and only has a few visible veins lacing its surface. The stick is double banded, both of them red and silver in color. The primary band features the company’s mark, while the secondary band is dedicated to the blend’s name.
The cold draw is reported as subtle, its strongest note reminiscent of a wine cork that has been pulled out of the bottle. Once the stick is lit, the initial third begins with a tingly burst of spice. It soon moves to the retrohale, where it offers just enough of a kick to remain noticeable and not overpower the smoker. As it transitions, a combination of cream and fruit flavors emerge, eventually coalescing into something akin to sweet berries and cream.
During the middle third of the Regius Exclusivo U.S.A. cigars, the sweetness is still around, but the cream note has dropped out of the mix. The fruit is a secondary flavor at this point as well. In their place, a core of dry wood and spice take their place and drag the profile into full territory.
In the final third of the stick, the profile remains mostly the same, though the cream does return in a secondary role, restoring some of the sweetness apparent in the first third. The wood and spice remain the strongest flavors down the stretch, and the stogie finishes warm and smooth.
The smoke starts off medium and finds its way to medium full before long, even reaching full strength in spots. The burn and draw are both said to be excellent, and several reviewers pointed out the large amount of smoke the stick puts out. In all, it’s a strong freshman effort from the company, and all the more impressive because it represents a shift in clientele as well.
The history of Rocky Patel cigars could be described as a love story, one that takes an average Hollywood attorney with a passion for cigars and turns him into a multimillion dollar cigar brand. When smoking a Rocky Patel cigar, you can’t help but reflect on the fact that anyone can realize their dreams, no matter where they come from, as long as they have a belief in what they are doing, and a zest for the day to day work and sweat that will get them closer to their goals.
When Rocky Patel decided to leave his law practice behind, which included such clients as Arnold Schwarzenegger and Gene Hackman to pursue his new found love for cigars, people thought he had lost his mind. Unlike most cigar manufacturers, Rocky did not have a family history of growing, blending, and rolling tobacco. All he had was a desire to learn the industry from the ground up, and a work ethic that got him through the trenches during his humble beginnings. Starting from field and barn work in Honduras, Rocky had a lust for learning the industry, and put a lot of hard time into creating what is now over a $25 million dollar brand.
In the 1990’s, Rocky introduced the Indian Tabac blend after teaming up with the Plasencia family, one of the largest tobacco growers in Nicaragua. He worked with this line of cigars while keeping his law practice for over a decade. In 1999, Rocky moved to Florida and sold his practice. After visiting hundreds of cigar shops and realizing that most of the hard core customers were serious cigar coinsurers, his focused turned to quality assurance. After a few years of acquiring skills in quality control with regards to growing, aging, blending, and rolling of his tobacco products, Rocky released the first Rocky Patel cigar line.
The Rocky Patel Company does not own any plantations or factories. All of the materials are purchased from growers, the Plasencia family, and produced in El Paraiso, Honduras. Rocky’s relationship with the Plasencia family can be defined as a joint venture in the way that the Plasencia’s grow the tobacco in several countries, and Rocky has the first right of refusal on all of their shipments. Rocky Patel has carte blanche in the manufacturing process and stays on top of every aspect of production, all the way up to fermentation techniques.
What does this mean for consumers? We know that Rocky is allowed to do what he wants with his controls and processes, which facilitate him to “take his passion and run with it.” When you smoke a Rocky Patel cigar, you aren’t smoking just a brand name that’s been around for centuries…but you are experiencing first hand a truly special lady that Rocky has fought long and hard for, and has groomed with his own hands to satisfy the most experienced of palates when it comes to cigar smoking.
Rocky Patel Vintage 1990 and Vintage 1992 series: “Best of the Best” from Robb Report.
Rocky Patel Vintage 1990 Robusto was rated 92 by Cigar Aficionado
Rocky Patel Vintage 1992 Torpedo was rated 90 by Cigar Aficionado
Rocky Patel Decade cigar achieved a classic 95 rating by Cigar Aficionado. The Decade marked the 10th year of their business.
As of 2006, Rocky Patel Premium Cigar Company's annual sales exceeded $25 million.
RoMa Craft cigars was formed in 2012 and combines the efforts and assets of two companies into one. These companies, Galveston Bay Tobacco, LLC, and Costa Rican Imports, LLC, are owned by Michael Rosales and Skip Martin. Rosales and Martin are familiar names in the industry and collaborated on several projects before cementing their business relationship. In 2011, the two tobacco mavens set up a manufacturing facility in Esteli, Nicaragua, named Fabrica de Tobacco Nica Sueño. The first blend to come out of the facility, the CroMagnon, was a boutique blend that made multiple top lists the year of its release. Since CroMagnon, the company has put together two more blends, the Intemperance and the Aquitanie.
The company sells direct-to-consumer through its online shop, Hava Cigar, which was initially a brick and mortar lounge located in Galveston, Texas. In 2008, this lounge was destroyed, but it bounced back and returned to business in 2010. That same year, Rosales and Martin met Nica Sueño in Esteli, Nicaragua. Sueño would be the mentor figure that would help Martin and Rosales launch RoMa Craft cigars. During their stay in Nicaragua, the pair worked with Sueño out of his home to experiment with blends and practice making excellent stogies. This continued until 2011, when Sueño’s wife grew impatient with tobacco bales that were taking up too much space in the home. Shortly thereafter, they started the construction for their new factory. In 2013, RoMa Craft cigars began an expansion on the factory that will add 2,500 square feet of storage and fumigation space.
While the company manages several brands, including the Adrians, Thirty and Hava Cigar products, it is best known for its own blends. The CroMagnon is the boutique’s centerpiece and is packed with flavor. It is a full-bodied stogie that is medium to full in strength. It comes with a Connecticut Broadleaf Maduro, a Cameroon binder and a Nicaraguan filler. It is available in five vitolas, including the Knuckle Dragger (4 x 52 Petit Robusto), the Mandible (4 1/2 x 60 Petit Gordo), the EMH (5 x 56 Robusto Extra), the Anthropology (5 3/4 x 46 Grand Corona) and the Cranium (6 x 54 Gran Toro). The stick combines three Nicaraguan tobaccos which produce smoky, savory, sweet and spicy flavors.
RoMa Craft cigars also produce the Aquitaine, which contains the same blend as the CroMagnon. However, this stick comes with an Ecuadorian Habano Ligero wrapper that adds some spice to the profile. It is available in the same five vitolas listed under the CroMagnon and contains many of the same savory, smoky and sweet flavors. It is a full bodied and full strength smoke.
The Intemperance is the last of the three RoMa Craft cigars and is a rustic, minimalist stogie. The company didn’t produce a band for its initial release, and the wrapper has a rough quality to it. It is available in two different wrappers, either an Ecuadorian Connecticut or Brazilian Arapiraca. Both contain an Indonesian binder and Nicaraguan and Dominican fillers. The Intemperance EC is mild in strength, but medium to full-bodied. The Intemperance BA is medium strength and medium to full bodied. They possess sweet, toasty and nutty flavors.
Martin and Rosales overcame a lot of adversity before putting the company together, but their perseverance has paid off.
Cigar enthusiasts everywhere are quickly discovering the amazing quality of Room 101 Cigars and are just as quickly jumping on the bandwagon by becoming devoted smokers of the brand. Many aficionados find it hard to believe a smoke with such a superb blend of flavors and aromas could possibly come with such a frugal price point. Which allows smokers to stock up with a bundle of these extraordinary sticks without suffering when balancing their bank accounts. However, as Room 101 Cigars gains in notoriety, the company’s list of celebrity clientele also continues to gain momentum as well, proving these cigars are appealing to a wide range of enthusiasts.
As a fairly new line, musician Matt Booth founded Room 101 Cigars in 2003 after being deployed to the Middle East as a United States Marine. It was there that Booth became impressed by the richness of culture the people embraced. Upon returning home at the end of his deployment he continued to feel a connection with his experience, which would eventually lead him to create FU, which stands in a way as the official seal of the Room 101 Collection.
Years later, Matt Booth was dabbling with creating a cigar smoker’s accessory line, which included lighters, cutters, and humidors when he was introduced to Dylan Austin and a few Camacho family members by a mutual business associate in Las Vegas. Almost instantly a connection was formed that would extended far beyond them being simple acquaintances. It was obvious Booth’s ideas were out of the realm of what was available at that time, and the circumstances were perfect for extending his plans. In no time, Booth found himself in Danli, Honduras touring the Camacho facilities and learning about the entire process of crafting handmade cigars. Thus, the blueprint for Room 101 Cigars was born.
Each cigar is created and distributed by Camacho in Danli, Honduras. Perhaps the most intriguing draw of smokers to these cigars is the exclusively grown Semilla 101 wrapper leaf, which is solely harvested for Room 101 Cigars. Adding to the beauty of the rosado wrapper is the perfect sheen created by light oils, as well as a few very thin veins visible upon inspection. These sticks are overwhelmed with aroma well before setting fire, and have a stocky stature with a firm resistance to a light squeeze, all the while creating the perfect harmony of characteristics for a premium cigar smoking experience.
Arriving in a custom-made slide top cedar box with a matte black lacquer finish and dressed in a stunning black and silver band with a custom tax stamp, the genius of Matt Booth, Franco Vescovi, and Dylan Austin cannot be ignored. In fact, the design has been described as combining an American tattoo with a Japanese flare. No matter which of four vitolas are chosen, they are sure to please. But, because only 12,500 of each vitola have been manufactured, it is important to grab as many as possible once they are found to ensure getting in on the action.
Founded just prior to World War II, Saint Luis Rey cigars originally came from the Vuelto Abajo region of Cuba. This district of Cuba is on the westernmost portion of the island nation, and is known for producing world renowned tobacco leaves used especially for wrappers. The story behind the company’s name is shrouded in mystery. Some say that the name comes from a reference to a Thornton Wilder play, which was very popular at the time. However, it also may refer to the town bearing the same name, in the center of the Vuelto Abajo region. In either case, Saint Luis Rey makes several cigars, all of which are known for their intensity of flavor. Despite an intense flavor, the line of cigars tends to lean toward the lighter side of strength. This mellow yet flavorful combination has led the company to retain loyal customers over the decades, despite changes in management. Most reviewers report a complex flavor, but overall, not a very rich taste.
Because of its continued popularity and steady demand, the line of cigars has been re-released several times. After being first produced in Cuba, then after a stint in the Dominican Republic, Saint Luis Rey cigars are now rolled by hand in Honduras. While the recipe has changed a bit over the years, the line features a unique mix of Honduran, Peruvian, and Nicaraguan long filler tobaccos. The wrapper and binder are both Nicaraguan. Known by aficionados worldwide as a brand that offers high quality at an unpretentious price—these premium sticks are quite affordable. A single stick retails online for just around five dollars, while a box of 25 can be purchased for somewhere around eighty five dollars. Within the umbrella that is the brand name, there are a variety of different Saint Luis Rey cigars, each with their own title.
The Churchill, (named after Winston Churchill, an infamous cigar lover) is a large stick, and is considered a benchmark of the SLR brand. With its grand size, some critics reported it offering a 90 minute smoke session, full of tasty but subtle flavors. A citrusy tang, almonds, peppery and earthy notes were all noticed by reviewers. For a bit richer experience, one should try out the Regios. Reportedly one of Frank Sinatra’s favorites when he made frequent trips to Cuba in the 40’s, the stick is a favorite to many aficionados. Although it is recommended to let Regios age to fully experience their flavor, many who have sampled them enjoy them fresh out of the box. Spicy and woody notes lead into touches of honey and coffee as the Regios progresses.
If a fan of the “prominente” format, one will enjoy the Doble Coronas. Difficult to acquire, this cigar only comes in “cabinets” of 50 pieces. A much longer stick than some of its counterparts, anyone critiquing this offering agrees that the flavor changes many times throughout the session. Those who enjoyed it described hints of molasses, rich earthy coffee, leather, and cocoa. An excellent draw and burn line helped make this an all-round good experience. No matter which type is choses, Saint Luis Rey cigars will offer an exquisite experience to those that try them.
San Cristobal Cigars have a relatively short history compared to the world's long standing pleasurable relationship with this product. San Cristobal Cigars are descendents of the smoking leaves that came onto the scene in world history after the famous Christopher Columbus discovery of the Americas. Many natives at the time were smoking the forerunner to this modern product. They wrapped the tobacco in plantain or palm leaves, however. The habit slowly caught on in Europe after a few years. Since that time, the tobacco leaf, the growing of it, and the rolling of it has evolved into a scientific art form.
From growing to rolling, care in each step of the process leads to superior products. Seeds are sorted and chosen to produce certain colors and flavors. The soil where the crops grow is also an integral part of the ultimate quality of the San Cristobal cigars. This determines the color of the ash and the overall appeal of the crafted leaves to smoking enthusiasts. These facts are well known to the renowned grower and producer of tobacco, the Cuban-born Don Jose Pepin Garcia.
Traditionally, Ashton has had a working relationship with the Fuente family in the production of cigars. Their working relationship had produced some quality smoking pleasures. For the San Cristobal cigars, however, Ashton felt the need to work with a partner that has the current capacity to take them to another level with the product, Don Pepin. The famous San Cristobal label was purchased by Ashton in the 1980s and obtained trademark status in the United States in the mid 1990s. However, Ashton did not pursue the development of a product under this name until the 2000s. After partnering with Don Pepin, Ashton felt they were able to put a product on the market worthy of this famous name in the volume that was desired.
So, together they chose a purely Nicaraguan production. The seeds originate in Cuba and are grown in the black soil of Nicaragua. This is true of the filler, binder, and wrapper. After two years of development, the product was ready to put on the market in 2007. These masterpieces of aromatic and flavor delights are created under supervision of quality control experts to ensure each piece is hand rolled to perfection. The influence of the Cuban tradition lives on in the Cuban Triple-Cap made as the finishing touch. The result is a full strength maduro with complex flavors in an appealing dark wrapper. And, as if to announce to the world the advent of a new, courageous line of cigar, a brightly colored, flashy band with a parrot on it greets the consumer's eye at first meeting.
Though it took a few years to get this brand to market, the wait was well worth it. However, in comparison to a few hundred years of tobacco smoking history, the time it took was insignificant. The patience of Ashton and the skill of Don Pepin combined to create a quality new product, San Cristobal cigars, for connoisseurs of tobacco products everywhere.
San Lotano Cigars are a superb example of why A.J. Fernandez is such a highly regarded maker of fine stogies. With a unique blend of tobaccos and a superior manufacturing process, each stick delights the senses and brings the smoker back for more. Reviewers have had nothing but positive comments about these sticks. In such a robust industry, standing out in the crowd is not always easy.
However, what are some examples of San Lotano Cigars? What are some of the things reviewers and critics have to say?
With an overall reviewer rating of excellent, the Connecticut line of these stogies are a spicy flavor burst of sensations. Generally, the darker the wrappers the more full-bodied the experience, but these Connecticut wrapped sticks by A.J. Fernandez are milky chocolate in color with a full-bodied experience. The Connecticut line is popular for its power and spicy flavor. It appeals to all levels of smokers and offers four sizes to choose from and quantities ranging from bundles to boxes.
Critics are raving about the Habano line of sticks. Again, this full-bodied stogie provides a lively experience with each draw. The spice burst in the mouth is coupled with a sweetness that does not overpower. However, the first half of the experience is considerably stronger than the second half of the experience as the flavors and tastes mellow slightly towards the end. The Habano line comes in four popular sizes, and again, smokers get to choose from a small bundle to a large box when it comes to quantities.
Now for something slightly different! Maduro stogies are an exceptional example of what a medium-bodied stick should be. However, the Maduro does not look like it should be medium-bodied with its dark wrapper and strong initial aroma. The even burn offers an easy draw for smokers and dark caramel emits a pleasant taste on the tongue. The finish is highlighted with an undeniable spiciness while remaining balanced throughout. This light Maduro stick comes in four sizes to appeal to any level of aficionado.
For a unique experience, smokers appreciate the oval line of San Lotano Cigars. These sticks are uniquely oval in shape instead of being the more traditional round shape found with most stogies. The aged tobaccos hail from Honduras and Nicaragua. They provide a well balanced experience for smokers. As with other A.J. Fernandez offerings, this oval line tantalizes the senses and provokes a restful calm.
San Lotano Cigars are unique in part because of the secret filler blend created by A.J. Fernandez. The recipe for the filler is a closely guarded secret. The only way to truly appreciate the reasons behind their secrecy is to personally experience the unique qualities of those aged tobaccos. Reviewers appreciate both the full-bodied and the medium-bodied sticks from the first puff to the final exhale.
Often times, a smoker can search a lifetime for a superior smoking experience. A.J. Fernandez is a young creator. His fine cigars have already made quite the impression on smokers and reviewers across the board. The varieties of San Lotano Cigars are a perfect example of what this artisan can accomplish. The future looks bright for A.J. Fernandez! Each puff of the stogie is sure to elicit the respect and favor of smokers looking to appreciate an experience full of spice and zest.
A company that began in Milan and officially started in Italy began to sell their own Savinelli cigars. They offer multiple brands with numerous flavorings. With high quality ingredients and a timely aged wrapper, each stogie is rolled by professionals in factories such as Olivia and Fuente. The flavors range from vanilla to pepper, with a fresh finish at each third of the stick.
Born in 1876 in downtown Milan, the Savinelli family built a legacy. They opened stores in which men conversed about their favorite pipes and their personal ideals. This family improved upon the everyday designs of clay and foam pipes by inventing and producing the briar pipe. They were not to begin their production of Savinelli cigars until many years from then. The child of that family took over the business. This young man had a profound knack for picking out the right piece for the enthusiast’s needs. His son spent much time designing pipes in the back room, until he invested in beginning his own business in Italy. Once he opened the factory, Savinelli cigars were underway. The factory was packed with the highest quality tobacco grown and quality pipes to smoke it in.
The available Savinelli cigars are titled simply by years and important occasions. The 20th Anniversary is a limited edition stogie wrapped in an Ecuadorian Habano wrapper. Filled with vintage, locally grown Nicaraguan filler, it boasts flavor notes of floral sweetness that one cannot quite pinpoint.
The Nicaraguan Reserve, on the other hand, is a full Nicaraguan puro stogie with the taste of espresso and syrup.
The Special Selection 2006 was made in the Olivia factory. It offers an Ecuador wrapper with 2006 Nicaraguan fillers and binders. It starts out with vanilla notes and follows up with a peppery finish. This offering is consistently packed.
The Liga Especial 2 is another Olivia factory product. Wrapped in Ecuadorian tobacco leaves and filled with Nicaraguan tobacco, this smoke has been noted to have hay-like scents to it.
The ELR, otherwise entitled Extremely Limited Reserve, has a Connecticut wrapper with Dominican filler. The ELR is a medium to full body blend, offering an even burn.
The Dos Compeones are a two for one, with a Corojo blend and a Sixto blend. The Corojo is vintage Nicaraguan filler and binding with an Ecuadorian wrapper. Reviewers said it has a bittersweet taste with a pointy tip. The Sixto, however, has a Habano wrapper with Nicaraguan blends. The draw noted flavors of hay and spice. This one has a well-constructed body. They both arrive in the same box, because the maker could not decide how to label them.
Beginning in a small town, this company has built themselves from the ground up. At one time, they were known for designing pipes and holding small gatherings for men to sit and share ideas for new inventions. Now, they are known for their Savinelli cigars. Each cigar is a new experience for the smoker. Each boasts numerous flavors and aromas. The stogies all burn evenly, with a consistent ash every time, making them a favorite among aficionados.
Serious Cigars will be awarding one U.S. high school senior a scholarship and a chance to demonstrate their filmmaking ability to the world. To apply for the Serious Cigars scholarship, applicants must produce a 2-8 minute video concerning one of two topics. The applicant may select to produce their video on one of the following:
The use of tobacco in religious rituals throughout history
Cigar culture in America
America and tobacco have a long and storied history together – a history that involves centuries of tradition and a craft that has been perfected by generations of families. The Serious Cigars scholarship is about finding those stories and helping students improve their skills as they further their education. The scholarship will award $1,000 to the winning applicant, which is intended to help with tuition, books and other college expenses.
The entry period for the Serious Cigars scholarship starts April 16, 2015 and ends November 15, 2015. All applications must include:
An application for entry that is filled out in legible print or typed out.
A 2-8 minute video showcasing either the use of tobacco in historic religious rituals, or cigar culture in America. The video must be recorded on a DVD that is labeled with the applicant’s name and school.
A copy of the script used in the video.
A recent photo of the applicant.
A high school transcript that includes the applicant’s class size and ranking.
The applicant’s SAT or ACT scores.
At least two letters of recommendation written by teachers, coaches, employers, school administrators, academic advisors or religious leaders. Letters of recommendation should address the applicant’s academic achievements and potential, and their involvement in extracurricular activities at school and in the community.
Applicants must mail their completed application and materials via US Mail to the following address:
Serious Cigars - Scholarship
ATTN: Ron Lesseraux
6608 FM 1960 W. Suite D
Houston, Texas, 77069
High school seniors entering university during the Spring 2016 academic semester are eligible to apply. Preference will be given to students pursuing a film studies major at university.
The winning entry will be announced three weeks following the conclusion of the entry period and will be posted on Serious Cigar’s website and Facebook page. Applications will be judged by the quality of production and discussion of the video’s topic, taking into account the applicant’s scholastic achievements, community involvement, and test scores. Entries that include copyrighted or inappropriate materials will be disqualified from consideration. The judge’s decision will be final and the award will consist of a check made out to the university the applicant plans to attend.
All entry materials submitted by applicants become the property of Serious Cigars upon submission. Applicants must acknowledge Serious Cigars’ rights to display, distribute, reproduce, modify and promote the content without compensation to the applicant or anyone else.
Use of personal information
The winning applicant and their legal guardians consent to the use of their name, the name of their school, and their area of residence. Serious Cigars also reserves the right to use the applicant’s photo and award information for promotional purposes.
Upon applying for the Serious Cigars scholarship, applicants and their legal guardians agree to hold Serious Cigars and its employees harmless from any liability associated with the scholarship contest.
A name you may not be familiar with quite yet, in regards to cigars, is Schrader Cigars. Fred Schrader is the man behind this newly released line. He is well known in the wine business, Schrader Cellars in the Napa Valley, for producing some of the best Cabernet's, and thus decided to launch himself into the cigar business. Upon his acclaimed success for his 2007 Schrader GIII Cabernet and 2007 Schrader Cabernet Sauvignons, he wanted to celebrate with a cigar, but not any cigar would do. He went out in search for the best tobacco to be blended into his own Schrader Cigar line.
Unless you are a wine enthusiast, you may not quite understand the zest Mr. Schrader had upon his success. However, his success really is ground breaking. Wine Spectator magazine appointed his 2007 Schrader Cabernet Sauvignons with two one hundred points, two ninety-nine points, and one ninety-eight points. This was the first time in the magazine's history to ever award an American wine with a perfect score. In fact, all six of the 2007 Schrader wines were given the highest rank possible, which is also something that an American wine producer has never achieved. Those marks are definitely a reason to celebrate, and a fabulous reason to create one's own cigar.
Fred Schrader is a cigar enthusiast himself, and he went out in search of some of the most unique blends of tobacco when creating his Schrader Cigars. He sought out his friend, Pete Johnson of Tatuaje, to help him distribute these cigars, but he is the developer behind them. The Schrader Cigars are considered a super premium cigar, which really should not come as a surprise when the man behind them is an acclaimed wine producer. The first Schrader cigar released is called the Hispaniola. It is offered in only one size, 7 ½ x 56. It is tapered at both ends of the cigar to give it a unique salmon shape. These are hand rolled cigars and made at the Para Ti factory. Para Ti is a small factory on the outskirts of Santiago, Dominican Republic. This line was made in limited production of 11,500 boxes, with each box containing ten cigars individually encased in their own coffin. The wrapper has the same Dragon label as the Schrader wines.
When we talk about the unique blend of tobacco used in the creating of the Schrader Cigar, it really is a masterful blend. The wrapper is a beautiful, leather brown color. It is made from 2001 Honduran Colorado Habano. The filler is a blend of three tobaccos, 2008 Criollo '98, 2001 Corojo, and 2005 Havana Vuelta Arriba, all from the Dominican Republic. The binder is also the 2008 Criollo '98. These tobaccos were allowed to age perfectly before being rolled, giving them their distinct flavors.
Speaking of flavors, these cigars haven't been around long enough to know what some time in the humidor will do, but one can only assume that it will make it an even more enjoyable smoke. This is a complex cigar with flavors that blend and mellow nicely. It starts out as a mild smoke and smoothly transitions into a medium body smoke. The flavors range from floral and leather, with notes of sweetness in the first part of the cigar. Woody flavors and notes of citrus come marching in towards the middle. There are also hints of nuts in the background. Towards the end, the floral and sweetness that you taste in the beginning are no longer present, and the woodiness and nuts are most flavorful. Since these were made in limited production, one would be wise to go to your local cigar shop and enjoy one of these masterfully blended cigars that are soon to be known by everyone.
Sencillo cigarswere, by the admission of the creator Keith Park, a resemblance of the finest of simple pleasures. The name of the cigar is correctly pronounced as “sen-see-yo.” In Spanish, the word sencillo means simple. The idea behind this line was to introduce a full flavored blend that is a sampling of one of the finer yet simple examples of a smoke to be offered. Its creator asks that you take time to enjoy the simpler things in life and get lost in the moment with a wonderful, flavorful Sencillo cigar.
Part of the creation of this premium cigar came from the muse of Christian Eiroa. He is a world renowned cigar producer. Because of a sampling of Mr. Eiroa’s cigars, the idea came about for Keith Park to launch the Sencillo brand. Because of this introduction early on, Christian Eiora then worked with Keith Park to orchestrate this wonderful cigar offering.
Sencillo cigars have a delectable blend that makes them a thoroughly unique smoke. Extremely flavorful yet this is a cigar that you could easily find enjoyable as an aficionado or as a novice or occasional smoker. The idea was to abandon the complexity that is often found with many smokes of this magnitude and revert back to something that offers the flavor without the overpowering strength.
Sencillo also offers a wide variety of branded items such as humidors, cigar lighters, ashtrays and cutters to complement their line of cigars. Keith Park believes that you should also have the proper accoutrements to add a beautiful balance to a wonderful line such as Sencillo.
At the end of a busy day at work or at play, sometimes you need to be able to just sit down and relax. What better way to do this than to open your humidor and enjoy the temptingly taste-filled sensations made famous by Sencillo cigars. One of these smokes just begs to be cut and smoked slowly as you relax and unwind. This is a simple smoke that you could enjoy anytime whether it is after dinner, after a round of golf or just because you simply wanted to take a break and sit in the study and read the paper.
It’s a difficult task to differentiate yourself from the rest of the pack when it comes to making cigars these days. There are a multitude of companies now that produce cigars using wrappers, fillers and binders from all over the world. Some of these are high quality offerings and some of them are just boutique cigars that have thrown together a product and hoping for the best outcome possible. It is the companies that take their time to find the best tobacco leaves, age them properly and hand roll the product carefully and one at a time that fits the bill of being the best. Prometheus knows this and always produces a tasteful, flavorful cigar that fulfills the promise of delivering a wonderful smoke which this company has built and staked its reputation upon. If you are looking for a cigar that will transport you to another time, a Sencillo cigar delivers. Order yours online now from our convenient cigar store!
Sindicato cigars, officially known as the Sindicato Cigar Group LLC, completely revolutionized how sticks are created. Buzz around the company’s creation began circling around online reports and an SEC filing in 2012. Straight from the company’s headquarters in Boca Raton, FL, an official press release celebrating the group’s founding in February 2013 announced industry genius and former Senior VP of Sales and Marketing for Altadis USA, James Colucci, would act as company President.
Where many companies are controlled by an individual or a major corporation, James Colucci and a board of directors guide an incredible coalition of singular stockholders. This incredible collective is comprised by forty-five of the nation’s largest retailers who have banded together on the manufacturing side. This means each body that comprises the Sindicato Cigars roster has spent almost every moment of their career intensely studying consumer trends. It is specifically this unique aspect of the group that caused an industry revolution.
The blend is a smooth and incredibly flavorful filler of mixed Dominican and Nicaraguan leaves bound with an exotic Indonesian leaf. Wrapped by a claro colored paradigm Ecuadorian Connecticut, this mild to medium stick delivers a rich bouquet of lightly charred cedar, raw honey, and a smoke to match.
The company released their second line, the Affinity, on October 1, 2013. Majestically crafted by Omar Ortez at his factory in Esteli, Nicaragua, the Affinity features a superbly aged, deep sand colored Ecuadorian Connecticut wrapper. The oil glazed, slightly square-pressed wrap gracefully drapes a Nicaraguan binder over a filler of mixed Nicaraguan and Dominican tobaccos. The out of the box aroma tickled of spiced natural tobacco to match an earthy and natural cold draw. The first third brought to life a flavor of creamy spice, undertones of citrus, and fresh bread dough that continued to the crisp nub of a medium strength smoke with a medium to full body.
The third cigar of the trio, the Hex line, was released at the beginning of the group’s sophomore year, on January 18, 2014. Constructed at the Agrotabacos factory in Condega, Nicaragua by Alex Ortez, the Hex is created from a select and rare dark Ecuadorian Habano wrapper over rare, finely aged Nicaraguan binder and filler leaves. The almost maduro colored Ecuadorian wrapper and rich rotund Nicaraguan tobaccos culminated in delicious flavors of earthy coffee bean, rich spices, and a medium to full strength and body.
Sindicato Cigars mission could not have been more successfully accomplished by the first three lines. True to their word, it was the feedback on these three lines that inspired the blends for perhaps the two best premieres of all of 2014.
Also known as the Flagship line, the group’s eponymous Sindicato line features a natural and maduro blend. The Flagship Natural was even voted the top stogie released in 2014. Both the box-pressed Flagship Natural and Maduro were blended by Arsenio Ramos at the Tabacos Valle de Jalapa factory in Nicaragua. Both blends feature a deliciously potent combination of an Esteli Double Binder around a filler of Nicaraguan Jalapa and Esteli leaves from the Fernandez farms. Each blend of the line features a different wrapper leaf. The Natural is the company’s first Nicaraguan puro and features a Colorado red colored shade grown Jalapa that adds a spiced earth and honey taste to the already creamy and roasted nut profile of the full bodied stick. The Maduro blend features a stunning, richly dark colored San Andres Morron which adds a bold new flair to the blend of the natural. From the first release of Sindicato Cigars, the company truly continues to evolve and prove that they will continue to provide high quality cigars and stand as one of the industry’s greatest companies.
Tatiana Cigarshave been topping the list of favorites among cigar lovers. A growing trend among many enthusiasts involves expanding their previously trained palate to evolve and take on the role of sampling flavored cigars, in addition to the traditional rods of the past. Even though it has taken some a little longer to jump on the bandwagon, this is definitely a trend that cannot simply be ignored or brushed aside. In fact, the popularity of these flavored cigars does not show signs of losing interest any time soon. Thus, it comes as no surprise to seasoned aficionados that one of the most sought after brands of flavored cigars in the world is Tatiana Cigars.
These hand rolled beauties are made only from the highest quality Cuban seed Dominican long filler tobaccos, and swaddled in wrappers native to Indonesia, giving them even more reason to be a smoker’s favorite. In addition, enthusiasts can expect a smooth, calming smoke to fill the room, which is a direct result of the two year aging process all the tobacco must go through in order to be considered worthy. Once the process is complete, Tatiana cigars also provide a variety of options in regards to packaging. For example, these cigars can be purchased by the box, tin, in tubes, by the bundle, or according to the different exotic flavors offered. Whichever packing is chosen, one thing is certain, they are sure to please the palate of the cigar lover.
Although the flavors, construction, and performance of Tatiana cigars are top notch and lend themselves to enough praise, the story behind the name of the brand is even more captivating. Cigar Aficionado wrote an article about Miami Cigar and Company in 1996, which included a detailed story about the family and each of their roles in regards to the business. Tatiana, however, was omitted from the story because she was still a high school student and not considered active in the family business. This upset Tatiana immensely that she was not mentioned in the article, considering she often helped her mother in the office. Therefore, as a way to apologize to Tatiana, the company took on the name Tatiana Flavored Cigars.
Since then, Tatiana has decided to take on an active role with Tatiana Cigars and has achieved great success in managing such a thriving line of flavored cigars. In fact, the Tatiana brand dominates among flavored cigars in general, holding more than 43 percent of the market. Perhaps this is because these cigars appeal to a large scale of men and women. Women are inquiring more and more about these cigars by Tatiana, due in part to the lovely aromas put off.
With great cigars, like those offered with the Trio and Mocha lines, it doesn’t take a genius to figure out the appeal. For example, the Trio line, which includes Groovy Blue, Night Cap, and Waking Dream, range in flavor from black Amboise raspberries with vanilla, honey and cognac, to Marcona Almonds, Café Arabica, Criollo Cocoa, and on to Vanilla Crème, Piedmont Hazelnuts, and Single Malt Whiskey. The Mocha line simply uses a mocha flavor to compliment coffee tones, which nicely enhance the tobacco without overpowering it. Thus, Tatiana’s receive high marks all the way around.
Tatuaje cigars have a highly regarded reputation for their impeccable construction and wonderful flavor. Created in the art, tradition, and style of Cuba, these full-bodied smokes have continued to get top ratings since their release in 2003. The Tatuaje cigar line came to fruition after Pete Johnson, a cigar buyer for The Grand Havana Room of Beverly Hills, California, decided that he wanted to create his own unique cigar offering. Pete teamed up with Tabacalera Tropical for production, and turned to Cuban expatriate Don Jose “Pepin” Garcia to roll these fine cigars.
Garcia is a well-known cigar maker out of Miami, Florida who has been rolling and blending tobacco since the age of 12. He has had his hand in blending such cigars as Cohiba, Partagas, and Montecristo. Garcia has been a consultant for various Cuban cigar makers and was also in charge of quality assurance for Cohiba during the 1990’s. During that time, Garcia was graced with the title “Master Blender” in his hometown of Cuba as well. With such a great talent by his side, Pete Johnson set out to make what is now considered one of the finest cigars on the market today.
Spanish for “tattoo”, Tatuaje was named after the line of tattoos that adorn Pete Johnson’s arms. But don’t let the renegade label fool you. Tatuaje cigars are seeded in the classic Cuban tradition. Johnson and Garcia decided to use Nicaraguan Puros because what they are doing in Nicaragua with their tobaccos is closest to what Cuba does with theirs. They are masterfully rolled in classic Cuban tradition all the way down to their three seamed caps, and they look and taste like they come straight from Havana. Presented neatly in a plain wooden box, Tatuaje cigars reflect Don Garcia’s Cuban influences from top to bottom, and they are the first brand of cigars that Garcia made on his own.
Tatuaje cigars are a boutique brand with limited production, so expect to pay a little more for these gems. However, it is hard to find a bad review associated with the Tatuaje brand, and they continue to get high ratings.
• Tatuaje Cabinet Especiales: “25 Best Cigars of 2004” by Cigar Aficionado
• Tatuaje Cabinet Taino: No.4 in the “25 Best Cigars for 2005” by Cigar Aficionado
• Tatuaje Cabinet Noella: No. 9 in the “25 Best Cigars for 2006”, and was given a 92 rating at that time.
• The Tatuaje brand was named “2006 Cigar of the Year” by Leaf and Ale.
• Tatuaje has earned consistent high ratings from Cigar Aficionado magazine, and from Cigar Insider Online.
• Tatuaje J21 Reserva was given high praises in Maxim Magazine’s August 2007 issue.
Tatuaje cigars can be found in the following brand names: Tatuaje (Brown Label), Tatuaje Havana VI (Red label), Tatuaje Limited Release, Tatuaje Ambos Mundos, and Tatuaje Series P (White label), Tatuaje Black, Tatuaje Cabaiguan, Tatuaje El Triunfador, Tatuaje La Riqueza Cabinet, and the Tatuaje Verocu.
Tatuaje is owned by Tatuaje Cigars Inc. and are manufactured in El Rey de los Habanos factory in Miami, Florida, and at Tabacalera Cubana S.S. (TACUBA) in Estelí, Nicaragua.
TheTiante cigars company was formed back in 2005 by baseball pitcher legend, Luis Tiant. Some twenty five years after retirement, the former Boston Red Sox decided to pursue a life long passion. The brand at that time was known by the player's nickname, El Tiante. Often known for never being without a cigar, Luis decided to take this trademark and market it in a special way.
Since its original inception, Luis has been paramount in making sure each stick reflects authentic flavors and tastes. A few years after the original company began, Luis teamed up with fellow Cuban, Jose “Pepin” Garcia and Pepin’s son, Jaime to create two unique blends. The new incarnation of the company has the son of Luis (Daniel) leading the organization as CEO. Daniel noted that the original company seemed to mostly focus on the baseball connection. The original marketing showed Luis’ baseball number 23 on the sticks in reference to his baseball career. The stogies initially attracted only a small novelty market in the Northeast section of the United States. In order to attract a wider audience for the Tiante cigars, the company reached out to Garcia who is well known in this industry. Markets are now in New York, Florida, Missouri and North Carolina.
These two unique blends are manufactured by Garcia’s company out of Nicaragua. Each blend is called Habano Oscuro and Habano Rosado, respectively. The wrappers are of Ecuadorian descent and the filler and binder hail from Nicaragua. Four sizes are available in 20 units per box or as singles. The sizes of the Tiante cigars are called Robusto (5 x 50), Pyramid (6 x 52), Toro (6 X 50) and Toro Gordo (6 x 60). Each stick retails for around $7 - $9. Colorful boxes of 20 are also available for purchase. In general, these stogies are sold in retail boutiques. Online purchase, however, is also possible.
The Habano Oscuro stogie is noted for its full to medium bodied flavor. Reviewers note flavors of chocolate, coffee and pepper throughout the stick. The wrapper is a rich dark brown color and is toothy with a triple cap. Both the draw and burn of this stogie was pleasing to the aficionados that shared their reviews. They noted that this stick is a little bolder than the Rosado.
Moving on to the Habano Rosado stick, reviews note the stogie as being rather mild with a delightfully sweet aroma, even though the body is still full to medium. The burn and ash were consistent, pleasing those who shared their experience. Woody tobacco, coffee and spice flavors are experienced throughout the journey. There are no visible veins to speak of, and the oil is very light in appearance. Of the two Tiante cigars, the Rosado is definitely the milder option.
Since the inception of the company, the owner and son have created two unique stogies. The revised company is branching out to conquer more areas of the United States. Since retiring from baseball so many years ago, Luis has created an impressive brand of stogies. Tiante cigars have attracted a loyal following of aficionados and have branched out beyond baseball fans. Many online cigar shops carry this brand, so visit one today and stock up that humidor!
Trader Jacks cigars are made by the J.C. Newman Company. This is the oldest company of this type that is still owned by the family in the United States. This company began in 1895 in Cleveland, Ohio. J.C. Newman was of Hungarian descent and after opening his business, he then moved it to Ybor City in 1954 which is located in Tampa. The reason for the move at that time was to be more situated in an area that was as close to Cuba as possible which was the primary source for his tobacco at that time. This area was called “Cigar City”, and today J.C. Newman is the last company operating there.
Manufactured in the Regensburg factory built in 1910 which was nicknamed the “El Reloj” (Spanish for “The Clock”), Trader Jacks cigars and many other brands sustained the company.
J.C. Newman now distributes products to over 80 countries worldwide.
In the beginning, his first brand was called A.B.C, (Akron, Bedford and Cleveland). This was named after a local streetcar line of the same name. His business expanded to include two additional factories in Ohio. While the depression was rough to weather, his business continued to grow and has done so ever since.
Today Trader Jacks cigars are packaged in a reusable package that touts there is no need to take them out of this and put them in a humidor. Dominican, Honduran, and Nicaraguan tobaccos make up the blend for Trader Jacks cigars. You will also find a very distinct note of spices from the islands with a subtle taste of vanilla infused as well.
When describing Trader Jacks cigars, reviewers often note that upon opening the package, there is a smell of jerk sauce, cognac, and cocoa beans. The taste has been related to that of spicy chicken. They hold a nice head and a very long ash. They are dark brown in color or natural colored with a Connecticut wrapper. They are extremely smooth in texture, and they produce an abundance of smoke. Probably the biggest praise, besides the taste, was the affordability of these sticks. They are priced so that even the smoker on the tightest of budgets could afford them. The flavor remains throughout the smoke from beginning to end. Time and time again, novice smokers and aficionados alike were all convinced that this is definitely a smoke that they will continue to purchase and smoke on a regular basis.
Many times as a product moves from the original manufacture to a larger scale production, something is lost along the way. This is not the case with these wonderful J.C. Newman offerings. The taste, affordability, availability, and blend of tobaccos make this a premium smoke that has won praises from everyone in the industry. With rave reviews from both smokers and retailers, this is a rare gem among the many brands that are available today.
So stop and pick up a pack today, and enjoy the experience, know-how, and taste that come from the oldest family in the business!
For over half a century, the mystery behind Trinidad cigars has proven to be worth the wait. These cigars were previously reserved for the elite among diplomatic circles, excluding all outsiders from taking part in the ultimate Trinidad experience. However, as time has passed, even the lowly are invited to take part in the enjoyment of one of these sticks that in years past was exclusively reserved for dignitaries and company.
Trinidad cigars were first produced in 1969 in Havana at a factory known as the El Laguito factory. From that point, until the early 1990s, little attention was focused on the Trinidad brand. In fact, the only reason the brand received extra attention was because the former manager of the factory where these cigars were produced gave an interview to Cigar Aficionado, claiming that Trinidad was an exclusive brand that catered to the needs of Fidel Castro. Furthermore, Avelino Lara, the former manager, claimed the brand was so exclusive that Fidel Castro was the only person authorized to distribute Trinidad cigars as gifts. He then went on to charge that the quality of Trinidad's, in comparison with the highly sought after Cohibas, was hands down made of better quality.
Just as these claims were gaining momentum, two sources have come forward and rebutted the claims. First of all, Fidel Castro spoke out against the charge and denied having more than minimal knowledge of the Trinidad brand at best, claiming he only hands out Cohibas as diplomatic gifts. Then, Adriano Martinez, a former executive of Habanos SA also made corrective statements in an interview about the quality of the cigars. He stated that Trinidad cigars were actually a lower-level diplomatic gift than Cohiba cigars, although the tobacco blends are extremely similar. The only real difference between the two is actually the third barrel fermentation that Cohibas receive. Either way, the debate sparked an interest that has continued to grow, and has since spread throughout the world.
After the debate continued over a period of time, the decision was made to release Trinidads to outsiders, or those not within immediate diplomatic circles. Thus, in 1995 at the Dinner of the Century in Paris, France, Cigar Aficionado hosted a party in which the guests were the very first to taste these cigars. Then, in 1998, the Trinidad brand was unveiled and released to the public at a reception in the Habana Libre Hotel in Havana.
Although only one size, the Fundador, was released in 1998, and the demand for these cigars began to grow. Finally, parts of the mystery surrounding these sticks would be lessened a little. The blends of these cigars are always mysterious, and it is hard to completely pinpoint the flavors. However, the quality of the cigar did not change as it was manufactured for mass consumption, versus just the diplomatic clients. In 2003, three additional sizes were introduced: the Coloniale, the Reyes, and the Robusto Extra.
Overall, as the mystery surrounding these cigars starts to fade, a small hint of suspense will always be associated with Trinidad cigars. With the obvious bean, floral, and herb notes, these cigars are sure to please the palates of not only world leaders, but also the common cigar enthusiast.
Vega Fina Cigars are in high demand throughout Europe. This brand has moved across the Atlantic in recent years, and aficionados are now able to enjoy the flavor in the United States. By and large, these stogies are quite affordable which comes in handy during tough economic times.
This brand of stogie is handcrafted at the factory known as Tabacalera de Garcia in the Dominican Republic. The wrapper is Ecuadorian Connecticut Shade. The tobacco inside this stogie is a lovely mix of Colombian, Dominican and Honduran flavors. Notably, the binder is Indonesian.
There is a couple of additional lines that were added. Vegafina Fortaleza 2 and Vegafina Sumum are also known as quality cigars per consumers of this product. The Fortaleza 2 is noted for a stronger body than the original. Notes of woods, herbs and pepper are found throughout the smoke. The binder is made of Dominican Piloto, and the wrapper is San Andres Criollo. The Sumum stogie stands for the summit in Latin. This product is known for its toasty aroma and rich flavors. The wrapper of this stogie is Cuban based with a dark, rich color that is aged for two years. Dominican, Peruvian and Nicaraguan blends of tobacco create spicy and earthy flavors. The Dominican origin binder is also aged for three years to add sweet notes to the overall experience of these Vega Fina Cigars.
The company that produces these particular sticks is Altadis USA. Other cigars that are produced by them include:
These are just a few of the several brand names that Altadis USA produces throughout many countries. Production facilities are located in Honduras, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, Florida and Richmond, Virginia. The organization continues to grow with over 5,000 employees worldwide.
Stogie aficionados are now in luck because Vega Fina Cigars are available across the United States. Go out today and add this great tasting stick to your humidor.
Viaje Cigar Company is often the company that smokers turn to when looking for a unique experience. What makes this manufacturer unique is that it believes that less is more. Having smaller batches means better quality control and ultimately a much better cigar smoking experience from beginning to end.; Each stogie regardless of the size gets hand rolled to perfection with consistency that makes these a better smoking experience for all levels of experience and palates whether a full-time enthusiast or a weekend warrior.
Located in the heart of California in bustling Los Angeles, this is one manufacturer that does not settle for second best. Settling for second best only leaves the future smokers getting less than deserved. By concentrating on each stogie as an individual entity, each smoke provides excellence without the chance for failure.
There are a number of styles of stogies on the market today. However, a single Viaje cigar is an wonderful opportunity to have a truly amazing stick in the humidor. Finding that perfect stogie by this unique manufacturer may take some time, but the experience is well worth the journey.
Fifty Fifty Black
A delicious full-bodied blend of Nicaraguan tobaccos, the Fifty Fifty Black is one strong stogie. These popular blends are highly sought after and come in three popular sizes: 5 5/8 x 46, 6 x 50, and 7 by 47. Dark and wonderfully aromatic, each of these stogies stands as testament as to why a Viaje cigar is so delicious and popular.
Fifty Fifty Red
While similar to the Fifty Fifty Black, the “Red” label qualifies this as a softer addition to the family with a mild full-bodied stogie. These come in the same three sizes as the stronger blend, and the coloration and taste are just as exquisite. However, the Fifty Fifty Red is a bit milder for those folks enjoying a full-bodied experience without the full burst of flavor.
Holiday Blend 2011
Many people look forward to the Holidays for the opportunity to enjoy quality smokes like the Holiday Blend 2011. The popularity of the name and flavor means these are hard to come by for just about anyone.
For a medium-bodied stogie, the smoker is introduced without hesitation to the Oro family of stogies. The Oro is the firmly medium bodied stogie offered by Viaje cigars. Every part of the stogie hails from the rich soil of Nicaragua. These even come in a multitude of sizes such as the Chico, the Delicado, the El Padre, the Fuerza, The Gran Fuerza, the Reserva, and the Torpedo.
Skull & Bones
Most folks are first intrigued by the name of the Skull & Bones stogies. These are medium in body, but the appearance is absolutely beautiful with a consistent flavor and aroma that never disappoints. The Skull & Bones are the perfect addition to any humidor… if the smoker can find one!
A Viaje cigar is an astonishing find for any smoker. However, this is probably one of the highest regarded manufacturers of the time. Because finding these delicious blends of hand rolled cigars is not as easy as it sounds, buying one of the prized stogies is about as satisfying as actually smoking one of these fine stogies.
When someone says the words Villiger Cigars, they are not only summoning to mind the amazing blends of tobacco both near and far, but of a multi generational tradition. The only way you can truly experience the gem you are about to smoke is to know what it entails, and how it got to where it is today.
Villiger Cigars, which is pronounced fillicher cigars, started back in 1888 with the ingenuity of Jean Villiger. He was a bookkeeper of sorts for years, and decided to become a cigar manufacturer. With the support of his wife, Louise, they started manufacturing cigars in their home in Switzerland.
In 1907, upon the suggestion from Louise Villiger, they introduced a new mouthpiece on theVilliger cigar. It was made of goose quill, and it was made to avoid loose tobacco from entering the smokers mouth. They named it the Villiger Kiel and it has been the best selling cigar of its kind in Switzerland. Innovative product development, as well as production has always been important, and is one of the main reasons these smokes have been around for over one hundred years. In 1910, the company expanded to open its first branch in Waldshut-Tiengen in southern Germany.
Villiger Cigars are known for many of their unique cigars. Of course they are most known for the Villiger Kiel, but also many others. The Rio 6 was made so that the packaging would fit exactly into a Swiss soldiers ammunition belt. The Villiger Export is a short cigar and individually wrapped in tissue paper. These facts along with many more have made them the most popular Switzerland cigar brands. One of their newest additions is the Premium Vanilla Cigarillo. You can choose to have it with, or without a filter. It is made with a superior pipe tobacco mixture, and then refined with a vanilla flavor and a Constellation Sweets filter.
Heinrich Villiger is third generation and current owner of the company in Switzerland, Germany and Indonesia. Corina Villiger, one of Heinrich's daughters and fourth generation, is on the board of the Villiger group. Being known for innovation in product, Heinrich chose to return to the origin of the cigar culture. In 1995, he joined together with Cuban business partners on a joint venture to import and sell Habanos exclusively. Bringing the belief that cigars come from all over the world even truer. In fact, five percent of tobacco that is processed worldwide originates in Germany and Switzerland.
One last look would be how Villiger Cigars are made and produced. They are, in fact, machine rolled cigars, not hand rolled. Their philosophy behind that is short filler contains chopped filler, which can be produced mechanically and gives you a more even flavor. The 1888 cigar was actually their first premium, long filler, hand-rolled cigar. They use at least three different tobacco varieties, mixing each one evenly with the other. After the tobacco leaves have fermented for a period of time, they are chopped up and the ribs are removed. After such process, they allow the tobaccos to rest for three weeks. This gives the mixed tobaccos time to blend. During this time is when they add any essential oils that are needed, or any added flavor. A great example of that is the vanilla they added to make the Premium Vanilla Cigarillo. The filling is then pressed into the binder and a bunch is formed. From there they are able to make several different shapes. Once the cigar has been given its shape, the wrapper is next to be placed. Each wrapper is hand inspected to make sure there are minimal to no visual flaws. It is then placed in the machine just so, so that the side of the leaf that was facing the sun will in fact be the outside of the cigar.
Knowing the history and production of the Villiger company gives you a deeper respect and gratitude for the cigars they produce. Since they have been around for over a century, they will clearly be filling humidors for years to come.
Wynwood Cigars is a relative newcomer to the market but has already drawn the interest of aficionados. All components of the products, from the wrappers to the binders and fillers are made in Honduras under the commission of the Wynwood Cigar Factory in Miami, Florida. Down to the Honduran rollers who competed for the chance to work at the newly established factory, the product holds the promise of delivering an authentic yet unique Caribbean-style smoking experience.
Part of the Fabricas Unidas family, and born from the minds of former Camacho President Christian Eiroa and Hotel Humidor CEO Robert Caldwell, the company prides itself on a “factory fresh” production approach that omits the traditional aging period. Instead, the product is shipped straight from the roll table to the customer in an effort to keep temperature and ambiance variations to a minimum. The customer then has the choice of how and where to store the product, and for how long, enabling him to create a smoking experience tailored to his individual taste. According to the manufacturer, the range of flavors reaches from spicy and sweet to mellow and crisp, depending on humidity, duration of storage and the method of storage.
Their lines are available in four dimensions: the Honduras 46x5.5, 50x4.5, 52x6, and as a Honduras Mini Diadema. All varieties comes in a box of 25 pieces, each of which features a band with stripes in the colors of cream, red, black, brown and peach, inscribed with the front mark “Wynwood Honduras.”
Wynwood cigars derive their name from Miami’s blossoming Art District and the company has incorporated the City’s art scene in its own image. They display and promote art by local artists inside the factory and offer tours of the facilities to the public along with hosting art-related events in conjunction with the enjoyment of cigars.
Some reviewers describe Wynwood cigars as a boutique blend that is solidly rolled and features a nearly flawless wrapper with an oily sheen. Many herald the overall look and feel of these sticks with descriptions of easy and even lighting. Reviewers have reported pre-light draws with notes of coffee, cedar and cream, and subsequent nuances of butter and espresso, as well as flavour notes of vanilla and woodiness about halfway through. In the final third, the product is said to feature a smooth, earthy taste. Others have commented that the product maintains solid notes of cedar, grass, nuts and spice throughout, with little notable variations as the smoking experience progressed. Aficionados appear to agree, however, that the product delivers a pleasant complexity and laud the draw, ash and burn of Wynwood cigars.
Independent review sites have also received comments that described the product as a full-bodied, medium strength offering that smokes perfectly, burning nice and straight. Wynwood cigars are also said to be of excellent construction, rewarding the smoker with a length of firm ash that reaches well beyond the one-inch mark. The cap, reviewers say, is expertly and securely applied. Overall, reviewers praise the product as a gem that oozes with great, savory flavour notes, features exquisite construction, and is uniformly judged to deliver an all-around exceptional smoking experience.
Zino cigars are one of the many offerings from the Davidoffbrand. In fact, these are how the U.S. was introduced to the brand. Davidoff’s father had a tobacco shop when he was young. As a young man, Davidoff travelled to Brazil, Cuba, and Argentina to see the factories and tobacco plantations. When he returned home, he added a cigar department to his father’s shop. With his relations being good with Cuba, his shop became a main location for their imports, and then, for a time, was actually the only local source for Havanas. Later, with the Cuban embargo in place and no legal way for Americans to purchase Cuban options, Mr. Davidoff realized what he might be missing by not having any offerings available to the United States. He decided to market an option that would be available for people in the U.S. The Zino cigars brand was created in Honduras in order to offer this type of smoking to the U.S.
Once the Davidoff production moved to the Dominican Republic in 1990, the company had complete control over the product and was able to offer consistency worldwide. In 2006, after production stopped on certain Honduras Zino cigars, the company took the step of getting all of their products under one roof. This offers the advantage of better “hands on” management and resolution of any issues. It also offers more reassurance for a consistent product. Whether it’s a single person or a small group of people, overseeing in one location can provide that consistency better than multiple factories in numerous places.
Although there were some styles that were phased out, the Zino cigars brand remains strong, and there are a number of options you can choose from. There is the classic line, the light line, and the cigarillos line. The classic line includes a double corona among other offerings. The light line includes milder options for those who might not be as used to the smoking, or just prefer a lighter option. You will usually find these milder options in humidor packs that are airtight. The cigarillos line offers you several options as well. Of course, you could always choose the platinum. In this line you have the Platinum Z-class series, the platinum crown series, the platinum scepter series, the platinum limited edition, and the platinum master edition. Within most of these lines (with the exception of the limited edition), you have further choices to make, so you can work on clarifying your favorite among the options..
Whether you’re looking to buy a strong and flavorful smoke, or even a mild one, you should be able to find something like what you’re looking for in the Davidoff Zino cigars options. With a large selection of styles and flavors, it shouldn’t be difficult to find one that fits your preferences. You can always ask for advice from your cigar shop. They should be able to listen to your preferences, and help advise you as to the type of options you might want to try.